If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.


 "It has been a profoundly transformational experience for me.  I almost can't believe the progress I've made in the past nine months."

-Group Participant

Due to safety concerns surrounding COVID-19, IRL Men's Groups continue to meet during this time via Zoom until it is safe to return to meeting in person.  If you are interested in taking part in one of our groups, we'd be happy to talk with you about the possibility of joining while we are still in an online format.  Additionally, a new online-only group is now forming that will only meet online, even after it is safe to meet in person.  The online-only group is open to anyone in California.  Limited space available. 

In Real Life


Men are acculturated to solve problems, not to find out how we’re feeling.  We’re taught that “men take charge," but we can struggle with taking responsibility.  And while we are coached to “suck it up” when we fall, we're seldom taught to reach out for help when we really need it. 

IRL Men is forging an alternative path, a path of interdependence in community.  We offer a space you can count on week after week, as you practice new ways of being with fellow group members.


In our groups, we provide both support and challenge, because both are necessary to help you grow.  If you're up for the challenge, come join us in an exciting, edge-of-your-seat journey on a path to greater fulfillment.

IRL Men's groups are open to anyone that identifies as male, including cis and trans men. We strive to make our groups inclusive spaces and welcome people from all racial and ethnic backgrounds.  

Brian Thompson, MFT

Certified Group Psychotherapist

Brian is a light-hearted, somatic therapist who isn't afraid of, nor unfamiliar with the sometimes scary & uncomfortable feelings our life's journey can bring. 

Brian has a background in dance, yoga, stand up comedy and basketball.  He has studied group process in a variety of contexts for the past two decades. 

Troy Piwowarski, PsyD

Certified Group Psychotherapist

Troy is an existential therapist with a private practice in Oakland, CA.  He serves as Clinical Training Director at the Existential-Humanistic Institute.  Beyond his passion for group work, Troy is also a visual artist and loves biking, chess, and a good sweaty ping-pong match.


 "It blew my mind how comfortable this can feel, especially because of how wary I was before starting.

Being in this group has been so helpful...who knew?!" 

 - Group Participant 

 "I'm seeing real guys sharing real feelings, and it's vindicating.  It's a big relief to have a place where I am free to be real too."

- Group Participant (after 4 sessions) 


500 Terry Francois Street, San Francisco, CA 94158

oakland OFfice:

4279 Piedmont ave. 

oakland CA 94611

SAn Francisco OFfice:

815 Hyde St. 

SF CA 94109

“Never allow waiting to become a habit. Live your dreams and take risks. Life is happening now.”

-Paulo Coelho

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IRL Groups stands in solidarity with LGBTQ rights and Black Lives Matter