Meet The Team

Meet with an experienced and caring therapist in Orange County, CA

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.

Headshot of woman with bright smile looking at the camera. This is Melissa Mellon, from Moxie Family Therapy. She is a therapist in orange county, ca. She offers emdr therapy for trauma in orange county, ca, and more! Contact her today for mental health services in orange county, ca.

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

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

Ailicec Figueroa Aragon, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 130959

Rate: $160 per 50 minute session

Speaks Spanish

There are so many things these days that can weigh heavy on our hearts and minds, it begins to feel unbearable to carry on our own. It may even seem like everyone else is thriving while we “can’t get it together”. Not only is it exhausting, we also start to lose confidence and trust in ourselves. I offer a safe space for those feeling overwhelmed or broken by life’s hardships, because life is hard and we are not meant to carry the weight all on our own. Together we can sift through the dark, the cloudy, and the confusing, and begin to make sense of things in a way that helps you thrive. 

In the craziness of life we often forget to offer ourselves some much needed TLC. I believe therapy is meant to be exactly that. 

Through this journey we will join in a safe space to uncover the tools that best work for you while embracing the process of growth and healing. Whether it may be from day to day stress, conflict in relationships, anxiety, depression, or trauma, you get to choose how you use our time together at your own pace. As a mom I have a special place in my heart for mom’s struggling postpartum. I also have a passion for helping young adults, families, and youth find a place of calm. I am excited to meet you and warmly welcome you into our space. 

In my personal time, I spend my days playing with my little one, caring for our special needs dogs, and spending as much time outside as I can get. For me, a moment with play, beautiful scenery, delicious food, a good book, and some mindful deep breaths is a moment of great joy. 

Ailicec’s Book List: 

  • Breath by James Nestor
  • Untamed by Glennon Doyle
  • I Thought It Was Just Me by Brené Brown 
  • The Body Remembers by Babette Rothschild
  • The Body Keeps The Score by Bessel Van Der Kolik 
  • Attached by Amir Levine and Rachel S.F. Heller
  • The Whole Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel
  • Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl

Ailicec’s App Recommendations:

  • MY3 App
  • Calm

Meet Samantha Houston-Crook, LMFT (she/her/hers)

CA License: LMFT 130698

Rate: $180 per 50 minute session

EMDR Trained

Everyone struggles with something. In today’s world we are overloaded with information and are pulled in every direction. Sometimes this can be overwhelming and make us feel like we are out of control. If this is what you feel, then you have come to the right place. I look to help individuals, couples, and families become reconnected and satisfied. Together, we will explore the good and the bad, uncovering areas that you may not even be aware of. This, hopefully, can help you feel more in control of those “what ifs” and “whys”.

When I am not in the therapy room I am out hiking, traveling to a new place, or reading a good book with my heated blanket and some hot cocoa. Originally from Northern California, I have worked with all populations, ranging from women who are in recovery from substance use, to children ages 4-18, and adults. More specifically, I have training in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Play Therapy, and Trauma-focused CBT.

Samantha’s Book Recommendations

  • Maybe You Should Talk to Someone-Lori Gottlieb
  • No-Drama Discipline: The Whole-Brain Way to Calm the Chaos and Nurture Your Child’s
  • Developing Mind- Daniel J.J. Siegel, Tina Payne Bryson
  • The Body Keeps the Score- Bessel Van Der Kolk
  • A Little SPOT of Emotion Books- Diane Alber
  • All Kinds of Families- Suzanne Lang
  • Don’t Feed the Worry Bug- Andi Green
  • People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil- M. Scott Peck
  • The Drama of the Gifted Child: The Search for the True Self- Alice Miller

Samantha’s App Recommendations

  • Calm
  • Calm Harm
  • Moodfit

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 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

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

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

Rate: $140 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
experience.

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

Meet Alysha Kim, ACSW (she/her/hers)

CA Registration: ACSW 96701 Supervised by Melissa Mellon, LMFT #40670

Rate: $140 per 50 minute session

You may find yourself constantly doubting yourself, often asking others for their input about major life decisions and even everyday choices. You may feel that others “have it all together” while feeling overwhelmed with your roles and responsibilities. You may worry about everyone else’s needs but feel empty when you’ve made sure everyone else is taken care of. If any of this is true for you, you’ve come to the right place. Therapy is a safe and supportive haven to remind you that YOU matter. Your desires, strengths, and needs deserve to be held and acknowledged. I will work with you to help you reconnect with yourself, your intuition, and the things that make your heart “sing”.

By the end of our time together, my hope is that you will see that you have everything you need within you.

Therapy is for you. As such, I’ll collaborate with you and check-in about what has been working and what hasn’t been working in order to tailor our work to fit your needs. It can seem daunting to know where to begin the process. Know that I will be here to support you, cry with you, cheer you on, and guide you every step of the way. You are not alone.

Whether it’s anxiety, depression, relationship challenges, trauma, or identity development (i.e. racial/ethnic, gender identity, sexual orientation), I will journey with you each step of the way to ensure that you feel safe and supported as we address your challenges, one by one. I use an intuitive and strengths-based approach, while also utilizing an anti-oppressive and systems framework. My goal as a therapist is to ensure that you leave each session understanding yourself better and with tangible tools to manage life’s challenges in a way that is personalized to your strengths and needs.

If anything here resonates with you or you think we may be a good fit, please feel free to reach out. It takes a lot of courage to let someone in. It is an honor to journey alongside you.

Some things that make my heart “sing” are listening to a great podcast or audiobook while on a walk, playing with my cat, singing along to a throwback song, spending quality time with loved ones, moving my body through yoga or dance, and time spent by the water.  

Alysha’s Book Recommendations:

  • Homecoming by Dr. Thema Bryant
  • The Power of Vulnerability by Brene Brown
  • Becoming by Michelle Obama
  • Untamed by Glennon Doyle
  • Start Where You Are by Pema Chodron
  • Your Illustrated Guide to Becoming One with the Universe by Yumi Sakugawa
  • All About Love: New Visions by bell hooks
  • Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  • Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park Hong
  • Notes of Self-Care for Creative Humans by Yumi Sakugawa
  • **Bonus Movie Recommendation: Everything, Everywhere, All at Once


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.