Santa Barbara PsychotherapyŽ

About Santa Barbara Psychotherapy

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Founder and Owner of Santa Barbara Psychotherapy®, Kristine J. Schwarz, is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, License # MFC 44909; and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, License # LPCC 994.

Kristine J. Schwarz, M.A., MFT, LPCC

Kristine provides therapeutic services to clients struggling with the challenges of interpersonal relationships and the stresses of every day life.  Kristine has worked with adults, youth, couples, and families in various therapeutic settings including:  Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital, Domestic Violence Solutions of Santa Barbara County, Goleta Valley Union School District, Working Alternatives Federal Prisoner Reentry Program, and Full Spectrum Recovery.  As well, she previously served as Core Faculty and the Masters in Clinical Psychology Clinical Training Director at Antioch University Santa Barbara.

In addition to more than ten years of intensive education and training in numerous areas of mental health treatment such as trauma, anger management and chemical dependency, Kristine's professional certifications include: Psychological First Aid for Survivors of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita provided by The Boston Center for Trauma Psychology; School and Community Based Post Traumatic Stress Management provided by The Boston Center for Trauma Psychology; and Domestic Violence Counselor Training provided by Domestic Violence Solutions of Santa Barbara County.  Kristine remains current on all aspects of mental health treatment by constantly engaging in continuing education. 


Cara Behan, M.A. is a Marriage and Family Therapist Registered Intern #97045, working under the supervision of Kristine Schwarz. A graduate of Antioch University Santa Barbara, Cara has been providing mental health and counseling services to the Santa Barbara community for 5 years. She is a case manager at Cottage Hospital’s Psychiatric Nursing and Chemical Dependency Unit (5 East), with extensive experience in severe depression, anxiety, addiction, PTSD and mental illness.

Cara believes in a holistic and integrative approach to psychotherapy, to help clients feel balanced in mind, body and spirit.  Each client is unique and Cara helps her clients discover what they need to lead authentic and fulfilling lives. Cara utilizes DBT, Internal Family Systems, Motivational Interviewing, the Oaklander model of play therapy for children and somatic psychotherapies, among others. She counsels adults and young adults, children and their families. She particularly enjoys working with children to help strengthen the bonds of family communication and healthy emotional expression. She is also passionate about working with young women as they navigate independence, relationships and self-identity.

Santa Barbara 

  • To provide a safe place for you to talk about what's going on.
  • To empower you to make change.
  • To facilitate your emotional growth.
  • To work on what's important to you.
  • To help you feel better.

Kristine has presented at conferences nationally, including: Buddin Praed Foundation, Northwestern University’s CANS Conference; Child Welfare League of America’s Finding Better Ways Conference; Terrorism and Psychosocial Preparedness: Impact on Children and Families Consortium Meeting; and the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children’s 12th Annual Colloquium.

Prior to pursuing psychotherapy, Kristine worked for 15 years as a producer/executive in the entertainment industry and therefore has a unique ability to understand issues that creative talent encounter.  She continues her passion for the creative arts by working with artists of all kinds.

In addition to private practice, Kristine is also the Executive Director of New Beginnings Counseling Center, where she oversees more than 50 counselors and case managers who work with those most vulnerable in the community, and multiple community programs such as the Supportive Services for Veteran Families and Safe Parking Programs.














As a certified yoga teacher, Cara uses yoga & meditation practices help bring positive change to clients' mental and emotional health. She has taught  therapeutic yoga for addiction recovery, trauma, anxiety and PTSD in Santa Barbara at Cottage Residential Center, Cottage Hospital and the Mental Wellness Center. She has also completed clinical training at CALM Santa Barbara, Crescend Health, and Central Coast Treatment Centers, where she treated clients with a history of child abuse, domestic violence, eating disorders and severe mental illness. She has certifications in Therapeutic yoga, Non-Violent Crisis Intervention, and Suicide Prevention. She is also a certified IFS practitioner.Cara can be reached at 805-364-3182 or at Her website can be found at

Santa Barbara Psychotherapy®
510 State Street, Suite 270
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
(Phone) 805.452.4054
(Fax) 805.564.2486


Call or e-mail Santa Barbara Psychotherapy® today for a confidential consultation: 805.452.4054 or