Hello, I'm Michelle!


Michelle Leao, LMFT

Licensed by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences #82421

I am a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist that works with children, parents, families, and individuals that are experiencing emotional and behavioral challenges in their lives that may have stemmed from early childhood trauma, generational trauma, inherent behavioral deficits, or those who were born with biological traits that drastically differ from their parents.  I have extensive history working with families and children who are strained from challenging behaviors, unproductive familial patterns, and ongoing parent-child conflict.  I have a creative and collaborative approach and believe that change can best occur by way of a cohesive treatment plan and team.  My practice and treatment does not only occur in my office, but anywhere where treatment will be the most successful.  My philosophy is that I will develop clinical programs and plans to do "whatever it takes" to accomplish change.  I look forward to the opportunity of working with you and your family to establish healthy relationships, emotions, and behaviors. 

Offered Services

Child, family, couples, and individual sessions
Court appointed therapeutic services
At home therapy sessions
School observations
Weekly phone consultations
Weekly follow-up session recaps via email
Parent Training
Individual Supervision for Trainees & Interns

Client Focus

Adoption Related Issues
Youth/family conflict
Learning Differences
Developmental Disabilities


1.  Perspective

As individuals we each have a unique way of communicating and interacting with others.  I believe that "we each speak our own language".  Our language is learned by way of experiences and how we have been taught to communicate.  Throughout treatment, my goal is to help clients gain perspective about their relationship with themselves and others.  I want to get to know you, your family, your child, and learn how you experience the world.  I want to be fluent in your language and create fluency amongst your family system.

2.  Your therapist.  Your champion.  your team. 

As your therapist, I am humbled to be a supportive part of your life.  I am very aware of the many facets involved in therapeutic treatment.  Whether you are in need of case management services, resources, educational support, or other necessities, I am committed to being your family's champion, advocate, and cheerleader.  I use a collaborative approach and take pride in cultivating your treatment team.  It may be just your family and myself, or working with other providers, whatever is most clinically productive for your treatment, I cater to your needs.  

3.  Compassion

My professional and personal experiences have lent to my natural ability to understand and work with the complex spectrum of emotions.  I bring compassion to each session and have found that with compassion, positive change is inevitable.