About Michelle

Hello! I am Michelle, owner and founder of Bounce Mental Health! I am a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) in the state of California. With over 10 years of experience in mental health ranging from children to adults, I am well equipped in helping clients navigate their mental health. Within that experience, I have specialized in working with neurodivergent children, teens and adults. I have worked in various school based settings and community based settings as well.

My journey to mental health started in high school when I took my first psychology class and has just exploded from there.I have a deep passion for mental health and consider myself a life long learner. I quest to always learn more and grow as a professional so that I can always strive to be the best therapist for my clients. I am also someone with lived experience with neruodivergence both within myself and those around me in my personal life. I love working with this population and am really tuned in to what makes people unique and different.

TL:DR Version

I am someone who:

  • has lived experience with neurodivergence

  • supports self-diagnosis, late diagnosis or medical diagnosis

  • has over 10 years experience in the mental health field

  • is passionate about mental health

My values

I strongly believe that addressing social justice issues are critical to ethical mental health care. I approach this in my work by continuously and consistently educating myself on the impacts of racism, ableism, homophobia, and all other forms of discrimination on the people around me. I engage in cultural humility which includes de-centering whiteness and de-colonizing practices in my work with clients and by supporting anti-oppression and anti-racist operations to help insure that each person I see feels safe and seen. I am also a big supporter and ally to the LGBTQAI+ community and understand the complexities of mental health struggles they face. I also embrace sex positivity, am alternative lifestyle and kink informed, embrace body positivity in all aspects, and always stay curious and open to my client's life styles.

I am also a firm believer that your therapist has to be a good fit. If you feel more comfortable with a therapist that looks like you and represents you more, I would be more than happy to share resources and referrals to BIPOC or LGBTQAI+ identifying therapists who might be a better fit. This is your healing journey and it is important that you feel safe and respected in therapy.

TL:DR Version

Michelle is

  • LGBTQIA+ affirming

  • sex positive

  • alternative lifestyle and kink informed

  • body positive and fat affirming

  • Anti-racist

  • Anti-ableist

My approach to therapy

My goal is to make therapy as safe and affirming as possible for my clients. I have a very adaptable style that allows me to meet you where you are at in your healing and customize your treatment to fit you. I offer the warmth and understanding that you seek in a therapist while offering practical and solution focused strategies to keep you moving towards your goals. I want therapy to work for my clients and that is my main priority in my work. We are on this journey together!

My approach looks and feels different from other therapy models or experiences with other therapists that you may have had. Befriending our nervous systems is the key to understanding and dealing with things like anxiety, meltdowns, frustration and many other symptoms. Our bodies often get stuck in fight/flight or freeze and we get stuck there with no information or skills to get us out. Talk therapy, CBT, DBT and other therapy models are not a one size fits all. Neurodivergent folks have different needs in therapy that these methods might not be able to support. By using techniques such as befriending the nervous system, using nervous system mapping to gain understanding of how each unique nervous system operates, regulation techniques, and somatic awareness, we are able to get to the core of the symptoms faster and come up with practical solutions. This is beneficial to those who have tried talk therapy before and it didn't work or people who struggle with communication in therapy.

TL:DR Version

  • Finds a match of techniques that meet the client's unique needs

  • Uses nervous system based approaches to managing symptoms

  • Uses somatic work to help sustain and deepen recovery

  • Warm, curious and compassionate approach

  • Uses education to help deepen personal understanding

  • Solution focused

  • Social justice and human rights lens

Do you have questions? Ready to get started? Connect with Michelle today!

Educational Background

Degrees

University of California, Santa Cruz- Bachelors of Arts in Psychology

John F. Kennedy University- Masters of Arts in Counseling Psychology

Licenses

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (California) #90117

Affiliations

CAMFT Member

Trainings and Additional Education

Integrative Polyvagal Theory for Trauma, Anxiety, Depression, Anger, Attachment & More by Deb Dana

Step-by-Step Neuroscience-based Interventions: Anxiety, Trauma & Emotional Regulation & More

ASIST Suicide Prevention and Intervention trained

CISM Advanced trained