Nonbinary therapist holding a mug of tea in an autistic-centered therapy session.

Support is here.

“Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It's a relationship between equals... Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.” 

- Pema Chödrön

River Marino, nonbinary therapist and artist, designed this illustration of abstract geometric shapes in soft muted colors.

My approach

​My approach is both collaborative and holistic, centering around values of⁣ embodied presence, empathy, connection and deep listening. I’m not here to change you or fix you. In fact, I don’t think you are “broken” or that there's anything "wrong" with you. I’m here to create a non-judgmental, accepting space for you to connect more compassionately with yourself.

 

I’m trauma-sensitive, social justice-informed, and view therapy through an intersectional lens (bodymind, environment, culture, etc.). During our time together, we’ll likely look at the environmental factors (interpersonal, economic, systemic oppression, etc.) that create, and contribute to, individual/collective stress and trauma. 

I believe the therapeutic relationship is one of the most important aspects of therapy. I put this belief into practice by: prioritizing self-care when I'm not in session and limiting client scheduling on a daily/weekly basis so that I'm able to show up fully for your sessions and be completely present with you.

 

I value equity, consent, and boundaries in the therapeutic relationship and am committed to creating an anti-oppressive space that is safe(r) - especially for people who are made marginalized. As a white person, I'm committed to challenging white supremacy, both internally and externally, and internal anti-racism work will be my life-long practice. I also aim to unlearn and disrupt my own internalized oppressions.

River Marino, queer therapist in North Carolina and Florida, designed this illustration of abstract geometric shapes in soft muted colors

I fell in love with meditation and mindfulness many years ago and have been practicing ever since. My offerings are infused with the transformative and healing qualities of mindfulness-based practices, bolstered by recent research, and grounded in years of practice.

 

All meditation + mindfulness offered in session is neurodivergence-inclusive.

Laptop sitting open on a couch, ready for autistic-centered therapy session. Fiddle leaf fig in the background, with Florida sun streaming in through the window.

We'll meet

online 

Before beginning my private practice, I provided counseling and advocacy at a domestic violence center and have also worked in hospice care, supporting individuals and their families through the process of loss and grief.

Over the past 15+ years, I've met with people who have experienced (or are experiencing):

trauma

anxiety

depression

domestic violence

emotional abuse

oppression

loss and grief

sensory sensitivity/overload

ableism/internalized ableism

difficult or unexpected life transitions

anxiety/grief related to climate collapse

burnout and autistic burnout

challenges with self worth

compassion fatigue

vicarious trauma

chronic pain

chronic illness

perfectionism 

abandonment

chronic stress

vystopia

neuroqueer abstract line drawing of a face created by autistic therapist River Marino. the words read: i am not a machine. my grief is tender, messy, untamed
Bookshelves filled with neurodiversity affirming books and potted plants.

My training

Above all else, I value lived experience - yours and mine. I'm insatiably curious and a life-longer learner who seeks to listen to and learn from the voices often left out of research, expensive trainings and academia. While "professional" trainings inform some my approach, I'm always listening to the wisdom of lived experience and exploring how I can make my practice (more) anti-colonial/anti-oppressive.

I provide an autism-affirming perspective in therapy and believe autism is a genetically-based neurotype, not a medical disorder. "I understand being autistic to be a cultural identity and recognize #actuallyautistic people as experts on their own culture." (quote from Janae Elisabeth, Trauma Geek)

I encourage self-diagnosis and fully support people who self-identify as autistic.

I'm inspired by Internal Family Systems and Polyvagal Theory and view both through a neurodivergence-affirming lens.

 

 

 

It's not possible to list all of the trainings I've attended in the past 15+ years, but here are a few: 

MSW & Licensed Clinical Social Worker (FL, SW10050, NC C011278)

BS in ‘Family, Youth, and Community Sciences’

Working with Autistic Clients Dr. Nick Walker

The Inside of Autism 6 week course with Kieran Rose

Understanding Autism through the Actually Autistic Lens 3 day training through Penn State University

Unpacking ADHD Stereotypes webinar with Sonny Jane, Lived Experience Counsellor

Unpacking Autistic Myths and Misconceptions webinar with Sonny Jane, Lived Experience Counsellor

DARe (Dynamic Attachment Repatterning Experience)

"The foundation of Diane Poole Heller’s teachings rests on her firm belief that we are hardwired to heal. Our bodies and our brains are storing memories of early experiences, creating patterns that deeply affect our relationships and our behaviors in adult life. Her holistic approach, largely based on Somatic and Relational healing techniques, helps us discover the source of those patterns and to apply the right understanding to unwind them, thus releasing new energy to live fully and freely in the moment." - quote taken from Diane Poole Heller's website

The Body Keeps the Score 2 day training with Bessel van der Kolk

Kripalu Yoga Teacher 200 hr

I chose to train in the tradition of Kripalu (meaning, "compassion") Yoga because of the emphasis on compassion, self-care, presence over perfection, and mindfulness in motion.

 

Certified Curvy Yoga Teacher 

I became certified in Curvy Yoga because I value offering therapeutic yoga that supports every body, shape, size, and ability. 

All of the therapeutic yoga, mindfulness, and meditation I offer is with your consent + based on an extensive knowledge of trauma and trauma-sensitive practices. All meditation + mindfulness offered in session is neurodivergence-inclusive.

North Shore of Lake Superior in autumn.

My identities

I come from white settler-colonizers who migrated here from Italy, France, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. I grew up along the rocky and windswept shore of the Gitchi-Gami (Lake Superior) with working class parents who were married until I was 18 years old. When I was 20, after experiencing several traumatic events, I packed my car with clothes, a tent, and $200 and intuitively moved west to live in the mountains just outside of Seattle. This was a pivotal time in my life, (re)shaping much of who (and how) I am today.

 

I value equity and social justice. As a white person, I'm committed to challenging white supremacy, both internally and externally, and internal anti-racism work will be my life-long practice. 

I'm queer and nonbinary.

I've experienced complex trauma.

I have a deep and intimate relationship with grief. 

I live with fibromyalgia and (sometimes) chronic(ish) pain. 

 

I'm autistic (late diagnosed) and honor neurodiversity as naturally occurring variants in human neurology. I'm committed to unlearning internalized/externalized forms of ableism.

Creating art and writing began as ways to cope when I was in high school and over the years have become nourishing practices of self-care and personal expression. Spending time in nature is one of the most important ways I care for my overall wellbeing.

 

After many years of living in North Central Florida, I'm currently in the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina on the occupied land of the ᏣᎳᎫᏪᏘᏱ Tsalaguwetiyi (Cherokee, East) and S’atsoyaha (Yuchi).

River Marino, autistic and nonbinary therapist, is wearing an Inclusive Therapists shirt.

Wondering whether my approach 

may be a good fit for your needs?

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I'd love to chat with you.

River Marino

(you may also know me as Angela)

pronouns: they/she

self-compassion break River Marino
00:00 / 04:00

Neuroscience has shown that self-compassion can have a natural antidepressant effect on the brain. When we practice self-compassion, it can help to regulate and soothe our nervous system, while sending a signal to the brain that we are safe.

 

My hope is that this mindfulness practice will support you

through difficult times.