Meet The Team

Image of a circle with the test "inclusive therapist. social justice oriented". Moxie Family Therapy offers therapy for women, trauma therapy and emdr treatment, and lgbt friendly therapy. Contact us today for the inclusive therapy you deserve!
Image of a circle with the text "inclusive therapist. LGBTQ plus affirming". The background is a pride flag rainbow pattern. Moxie Family Therapy offers inclusive therapy, and lgbt friendly therapy in california. Contact us today and learn if trauma therapy, coupes therapy, or ptsd treatment could benefit you!
Image of a circle with the text "inclusive therapist. all bodies, identities, and abilities." Moxie Family Therapy offers mental health services in orange county, ca, emdr therapy for trauma in orange county, ca, and more.

Meet Melissa Mellon, LMFT (she/her/hers)

Founder and Director

CA License: LMFT 40670

Rate: $200 per 50 minute session

EMDR Trained

Deciding to begin the therapy process is an important and life-changing decision. Life can bring so many beautiful and challenging experiences and opportunities. As a therapist in Orange County, CA, I believe that each of us has the knowledge and ability to create the life that we desire.  Sometimes we just need some support and guidance in that process.

Also, I know therapy can be uncomfortable and awkward at first. As a therapist, I respect how vulnerable and humbling it can be to take the necessary steps toward therapy. As a result, I strive to offer a comfortable and safe space to help you define your own goals. We will work collaboratively together to reach your goals, but you will always be the driver.

Clients tell me that I am different from other therapists

Some therapists in Orange County will simply sit and listen to you. But, I am not one of those therapists. I will listen and support you AND I will challenge you to work towards building a life that lights you up. We will laugh, cry, and have fun together, all while getting the tough work done! I offer the experience, knowledge, and skills to help you work through whatever issues are getting in your way. Whether they be stress, life changes, family conflict, depression, anxiety, or trauma.

In my work with children and families, I believe that whether your family has been created through birth, foster, or adoption, developing attachment, connection, and unconditional love is paramount to creating a healthy and loving home.   I work closely with children, teens, and caregivers to develop communication skills and interactions that make the home safe and comfortable for all.

I understand how important it is to feel comfortable and compatible with your therapist in Orange County.  Feel free to contact me for a consultation to see if I would be a good fit for your therapy journey. I look forward to speaking with you!

A little about me:

I adopted by daughter through a Kinship Foster placement when she was 2 years old. I love dogs (and have 3 of them in fact and therefore a pretty loud home), reading novels, listening to lots of nerdy podcasts and audio books, Disneyland, am rather high maintenance with my coffee, love a good Netflix binge watching weekend, and run on sentences.

Melissa’s Book Recommendations:

  • Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work by John Gottman
  • Getting Past Your Past by Francine Shapiro
  • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
  • Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
  • The Empath’s Survival Guide by Judith Orloff
  • Untamed by Glennon Doyle
  • Wolfpack by Abby Wambach
  • The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
  • Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  • Attached by Amir Levine & Rachel Heller
  • The Whole Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel
  • The Connected Child by Karyn B. Purvis
  • The Invisible String by Patrice Karst and Joanne Lew-Vriethoff
  • The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn

Meet Dr. Crystal Sanchez, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 105555

Rate: $200 per 50 minute session

Speaks Spanish

EMDR Trained

Welcome. Taking the first step to getting help can feel daunting. Thank you for being here. Sometimes, life can feel like a whirlwind of unexpected events that can leave you feeling overwhelmed, confused, and empty inside. Whatever it is that you have experienced, know that you have the right to find peace and tranquility. Encountering trauma is scary, but know that you are not alone. Know that YOU are valuable and worthy of living a peaceful life with meaning. 

Naturally, I incorporate a spiritually holistic approach and strive to connect people to what feels good to their soul.

Overall, my approach is mostly centered around your distinct needs. I believe individuals need a warm, safe, and sacred space to begin the healing process. Your experience is important to me and my hope is to maintain a sacred space to help you explore challenges and find some understanding. My role is to be your anchor as we walk through difficult moments. My goal is to be your guide and provide you with a safe, non-judgmental space to find clarity. I strongly believe every person has natural strengths that make them resilient and my hope is to find these within you.

It would be an honor to sit with you. If there is anything that resonates with you here. Let’s connect. 

About Me:

I enjoy admiring nature, listening to music, spending time with loved ones, and trying new foods. I also love reading new books, aromatherapy, and engaging spiritual practice.

Book Recommendations:

  • A Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
  • The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
  • Anatomy of the Spirit by Caroline Myss
  • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
  • The Empaths Survival Guide by Judith Orloff
  • Quiet by Susan Cain
  • Untamed by Glennon Doyle
  • The Drama of the Gifted Child by Alice Miller
  • A Gentle Reminder by Bianca Sparacino

App Recommendations:

  • Calm App
  • Headpace

Yuki Shida, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 126500

Rate: $180 per 50 minute session

Speaks Japanese

EMDR Trained

As women, we are naturally attuned to the needs of those around us. We don’t think twice about nurturing and loving our people – whether they be our own children, parents, friends, or coworkers. And lately, doesn’t it seem like all of our people need us in one way or another? After the year that we’ve had, it’s no wonder that so many of us are running on empty. 

Whenever you go on a flight, there is a safety video where an oxygen mask comes down for each passenger in an emergency. You are instructed to put it on yourself before you reach over and put it on your child. This order of priorities can apply to all areas of our lives too. You can’t take care of the people you love well until you take care of yourself first.

In the therapy room, there is no topic too trivial or complex.

I am here to follow where your thoughts and your heart go, and we will discover how it is you have come to feel this way. Awareness is the first step to creating lasting change. Through therapy, I help my clients to understand that their perceived shame and struggle are actually badges of honor and courage. No matter your past or your current circumstances, you deserve to experience life richly and fully. You are in the driver’s seat of your mental health and your life. Thank you for trusting me to be a part of your journey.

About me: 

I am a mom of 2 kids, married for 8 years, 2nd generation Japanese-American. I love traveling, 1000-piece puzzles, drinking boba tea (50% sugar, less ice!), growing my vegetable garden, and going on adventures with my family.  

Yuki’s Book Recommendations:

  • Boundaries – Charles Townsend and Henry Cloud
  • Getting Past Your Past – Francine Shapiro, PhD
  • Parenting from the Inside Out – Mary Hartzell and Daniel J. Siegel 
  • Back to Work After Baby – Lori Mihalich-Levin
  • Hold Me Tight – Dr. Sue Johnson
  • Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor Frankl

Yuki’s App Recommendations:

  • MY3 App
  • Calm
  • Headspace

Meet Lorraine Burga, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 131958

Rate: $160 per 50 minute session

Speaks Spanish

“The hardest thing to do is to simplify your life. It is so easy to make complex.”- Yvon Chouinard. With the crazy demands’ life throws at us like work, school, family, relationships, important events and trauma it can be a challenge to find time to be present when we worry about the future and carry the past. To simply be becomes a luxury money cannot buy and something our busy schedules prevent us from doing. 

When attempting to meditate, to work out, to read, or to relax it seems that our mind still finds a way to remind us of our past or worry about our future. With that comes fear, sadness, anxiety and stress. It can be frustrating to be told to “engage in self-care” when one has millions of things to worry about or trauma to try and process while living life. 

While in therapy one can freely express, be still, and find a safe space to process the difficulties that life presents or has presented.  

I would like to be the hand you hold on your therapeutic journey. I will help you make sense of your most complicated thoughts without judgement and help assist you with developing effective coping strategies that you can utilize to your advantage. With that, you will be able to focus on being more present and regaining control of your life once again. I will help you learn that your past does not define you and fear of the future should not hold you back from being present. I have received positive feedback from parents, families and individual clients who have felt heard, seen and understood and I would love to be that for you as well. 

About me:

I enjoy sitting on the beach and listening to the waves come and go, it helps me stay present! I am first generation Peruvian- America and speak Spanish fluently. I enjoy walks, reading, binging Netflix and baking (I have the biggest sweet tooth!) My dog is the best distraction I could ask for and I love spending time with my friends and family because they help keep my head above water!

Lorraine’s Book Recommendations:

  • Let That Sh*t Go- Nina Purewal and Kate Petriw
  • Can You Drink the Cup? – Henri J.M. Nouwen
  • The Body Keeps the Score- Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D

Lorraine’s App Recommendations:

  • Sanvello
  • Calm
  • Card Decks
  • PTSD Coach

Meet Catherine Villalpando, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 140507

Rate: $160 per 50 minute session

Do you ever find yourself feeling “Not good enough” or “stuck in your situation.” Change isn’t easy and most of the time, we have no idea where to start. Not all of us have a support system or a healthy one at most. We find ourselves repeating cycles and longing for something different. I truly believe we all have the power to change, no matter where we come from or the struggles we have gone through. You deserve to have a safe space to navigate through this process. To feel heard, connected to and share emotional content without feeling judged.

As your therapist, I understand that these feelings might never go away and it’s a possibility they won’t, but I can guarantee I will be here to help you develop the tools you need to get through those difficult times. Whether it’s anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, or life stressors, you have the power to change.

You are not your past and together we can work on becoming a better version of yourself. 

As someone who started their own therapy journey in high school, I developed a passion to help others the way my therapist helped me. I have a passion for working with women, teens and children. We all struggle and could use a cheerleader on our side to achieve our goals. We are capable of breaking cycles and it all starts here, with you. 

About me: 

I am a mother of 2 with a love for anything Disney. I love to blast all types of music, enjoy a good documentary and value family time.

Catherine’s App Recommendations:

  • Calm
  • Headspace

Meet Alexandra Anguiano, AMFT (she/her/hers)

CA Registration: AMFT 118873 Supervised by Melissa Mellon, LMFT #40670

Rate: $150 per 50 minute session

EMDR Trained

The ways you interact, connect, and attach to others has deeply rooted ties. You may find yourself caught in between your actions and your intentions, as if they are working against one another. Maybe you’re thinking “How did I get here?” and “Where am I going?” What may have worked in the past, is no longer helping you live the life you wish to build for yourself. We can work together to identify where and why you may be struggling and how to root yourself in healing for more fulfilling relationships.

What is most important to me is helping people of all ages feel seen, heard, safe, and valued.

As your therapist, I will meet you where you are at and move with you as you choose and are ready. Bursting at the seams or hidden somewhere deep – our emotions serve a purpose in our life; they provide us with information and meaning. Moving through those emotions can be scary, but you don’t have to do it alone – that’s where I can help. I utilize my training in Emotion Focused Therapy to help guide you through these emotions (even the ones that tell you to stop feeling the feelings!) to get you to a place of meaning and understanding.

I love working with children and teens! Your child is ever-growing and changing, adapting to the world around them in the way that best makes sense for them. But how do you as the caregiver make sense of it? Young children don’t sit and talk to us about what’s really bothering them because that’s just not the way they work. Play is the language of children. I utilize Play Therapy to learn more about the child and their inner world. In doing so, I help children and caregivers move through difficult issues and learn new ways of connecting to one another.

The experience of being a teen is unique and it’s what brought me into therapy at the age of fourteen. While your struggles are very real, they are oftentimes dismissed or misunderstood. My goal is to help teens reconnect with themselves and their support system to start feeling better and more confident as they begin to move through the world in new ways.

Starting your therapy journey is a big step. I am honored that I get to help people take that step and begin their journey. If you think we may be a good fit, feel free to reach out to me and I’d be happy to connect with you!

Alexandra’s Book Recommendations

  • I Am Human: A Book of Empathy by Susan Verde
  • A Little SPOT Series by Diane Alber
  • The Color Monster by Anna Llenas
  • The Whole Brain Child by Dr. Dan Siegel
  • Thriving as an Empath by Judith Orloff
  • Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving by Pete Walker
  • The Accidental Masterpiece: On the Art of Life and Vice Versa by Michael Kimmelman

Alexandra’s App Recommendations

  • UCLA Mindful

Meet Ana Fernandez, ASW (she/her/hers)

CA Registration: ACSW 102963 Supervised by Melissa Mellon, LMFT #40670

Rate: $150 per 50 minute session

Speaks Spanish

EMDR Trained

You may feel like you are drowning in difficult emotions, foggy minded or confused with your never ending to do lists and a heavy heart. Maybe you are experiencing mom guilt from any of the never-ending challenges of being a momma, because parenting is HARD! Or perhaps you are faced with the daunting realization that your child needs therapy. Here comes shame & guilt creeping in. “What did I miss? How did I let things get this bad?” I know your first instinct is to blame yourself momma, but please don’t.

As your therapist, I can’t promise to make your problems go away, but I can promise to gently guide you into calmer waters.

As a single mother of an overactive four-year-old, I have struggled with mom guilt most of my son’s life. You are not alone! Your courage to set aside your own feelings to support your child, is brave and speaks volumes to the love you have for your child. I help women and children who struggle with poor self-esteem, anxiety and depression find balance and joy in daily living. Guided by a Strengths’ based approach, I strive to provide emotional safety in a brave space for clients to process their challenging emotions. I am motivated by the resilience humans demonstrate in the face of deep suffering. Which is why, my therapeutic approach is focused on applying the power of positivity through a strong gratitude practice, mindfulness approach and in rediscovering that healthy relationship with yourself again.

My personal use of mindfulness practice is aligned with my therapeutic approach. By meditating every morning, I have anchored in a self-care practice that supports healthy stress management strategies in my personal life. 

I offer flexible telehealth appointments at the discretion of your working hours and that of your child’s needs. I also have limited in person appointments available. Please reach out to me if you need a pep talk on why you are doing the best that you can, while also accepting that you need help to do and feel better. 

Ana’s Book Recommendations

  • Rising Strong by Brene Brown
  • Codependent No More by Melody Beattie
  • Building a Life Worth Living by Marsha M. Linehan
  • The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
  • The Four Agreements By don Miguel Ruiz
  • The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins

Allison Huynh (she/her/hers)

CA Registration: AMFT 131046 Supervised by Melissa Mellon, LMFT #40670

Rate: $140 per 50 minute session

Even the most resilient, creative, and high achieving people face moments which bring them to their knees. They may feel blindsided by a traumatic event, loss of a meaningful relationship, burnout, or a medical diagnosis forcing them to evaluate the trajectory of their lives. They lack energy for self-care, loved ones, work, school, or activities which once brought joy. They stumble through a fog of emotional numbness, find themselves crying when no one is around, or feel flooded with anxious thoughts. They desire revitalization within themselves and their significant relationships.

Finding a therapist can be extremely stressful especially when life already feels overwhelming. It can be tough to find someone who will create a warm and safe space while also gently challenging you to take steps forward in building the life you envision for yourself. To achieve this balance, I approach each session with hope, patience, and humility to support clients as they determine their goals for healing and change in their lives. I integrate techniques from attachment theory, emotionally focused therapy, ACT, CBT, and other evidenced-based practices to support your therapeutic process.

I specialize in working with children, teens, and adults experiencing anxiety, depression, and life transitions.

Although I truly love working with clients of all ages, backgrounds, and experiences, the clients who gravitate toward me often identify as ambitious, creative, and deep thinkers.

I also offer family and couple therapy with an interest in interracial relationships. With compassion and curiosity, we will process emotions, change unhelpful thought and behavior patterns, strengthen coping skills, and repair damaged relationships. 

By integrating emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and relational strategies, we will discover meaningful insight into the distress you are experiencing and lay a foundation for lasting change. When you are ready, I would be honored to partner with you in your healing journey.

A little about me:

Our therapeutic relationship is about you, but if it is helpful, here is a bit about my background. Prior to becoming a therapist, I earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley. I also had a career for over 15 years in sales and marketing and spent 7 years mentoring high school girls. Through these experiences and my own personal therapy, I developed a passion for helping people find healing and meaning in their lives. This led me to pursue a master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Chapman University. I have been married for over seven years, I love sushi, and an impromptu dance party does wonders for my mental health.

Allison’s Book Recommendations: 

  • Man’s Search for Meaning by Vicktor Frankl
  • Good Inside: The Guide to Becoming the Parent You Want to Be by Dr. Becky Kennedy
  • The How of Happiness by Sonja Lyubomirsky
  • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel Van Der Kolk

Allison’s App Recommendations:

  • Good Inside with Dr. Becky
  • UCLA Mindful 

Meet Kendall Gee, AMFT (she/her/hers)

CA Registration: AMFT 131046 Supervised by Melissa Mellon, LMFT #40670

Rate: $150 per 50 minute session

When trying to navigate life stressors, we can feel as though we’re alone and overwhelmed
with feelings of anxiety and stress. You may be struggling in your relationships with others and
most importantly, the relationship with yourself. You may be wondering, “Why am I like this?”
“How do I get through this?” It’s okay to feel lost and unsure of how to go about therapy – we
will work together every step of the way.

As your therapist, I am here to listen, talk, and progress with you at your own pace. To connect
and build a trusting relationship, I utilize empathy, compassion, and of course, some fun in the
therapy room! I will help you to uncover and better understand difficult emotions that you

Whether they are rooted in depression, anxiety, trauma, or strained relationships, I will guide you in transforming emotional pain into healing and growth.

I believe that resiliency flows through each and every one of us even in our darkest moments. No two people are the same, which is why I will individualize the therapy process for you, including finding what works best for you and your needs, wants, and goals.

I have a passion for working with women, teens, and children. Through the different stages of
life and tough obstacles, it’s important for youth to have a safe space to process challenges that
they are facing and the emotions that come with them. As adults, we are also always changing
and evolving through life experiences that we encounter. I guide women and youth to build
self-esteem, self-love, and most of all, self-compassion. This includes healthy boundaries,
communication skills, and coping skills. And in turn, their relationships with others become
more meaningful and fulfilling.

In my own therapy journey, I was able to explore and discover the tools that worked for me,
which is what I empower my clients to do as well. I foster inclusivity and take an integrative
approach to therapy in order to tailor the therapy process to best suit you (whether it be
through CBT, play therapy, mindfulness, and more). You already completed the courageous first
step of coming to this page. If you’re interested in having me join your therapy journey, then
please feel free to reach out to me!

Kendall’s Book Recommendations:

  • Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
  • The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel A. van der Kolk
  • The Power of Vulnerability by Brene Brown
  • Codependent No More by Melody Beattie
  • Facing Codependence by Pia Mellody
  • Self Parenting by John K. Pollard
  • It Didn’t Start with You by Mark Wolynn
  • What Happened to You? by Bruce D. Perry
  • Scattered Minds by Gabor Mate

Yasmeen Pardo (she/her/hers)

Administrative Assistant

Start Your Journey With A Therapist in Orange County, CA

Therapy can seem like a lot at first, but we’d love to support you every step of the way. Our Orange County-based therapy practice is here for you to provide the support you deserve! If you have any more questions, we would love for you to read our FAQ page. To get started, follow these simple steps:

  1. Fill out the form below to schedule a FREE CONSULTATION.
  2. Meet with a member of our team
  3. Begin experiencing the rewards of therapy!

Schedule an appointment or free consultation

Services Offered at Moxie Family Therapy

Our team offers a variety of services at our Orange County, CA therapy practice. Mental health services Moxie Family Therapy provide include counseling for women, EMDR and trauma therapycouples counseling, counseling for teen girls, family counseling, therapy for therapists, and counseling for young adults and college students.

Success! You're on the list.
Skip to content