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Therapy SoCal Dr. Melissa Jinariu Licensed Psychologist
About Dr. Melissa Jinariu


I have been practicing as a Licensed Clinical Psychologist (PSY26316) and Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT42216) for a combined 20+ years. In that time, I have aided hundreds of individuals, children, and families in reducing trauma, relational discord, and emotional pain. I approach treatment from a strength-based perspective and will collaborate with you to form an individualized treatment plan to reduce distress and build resilience. 


Education & Training


I received my Doctorate in Psychology from Azusa Pacific University in 2011 and received clinical training in community mental health, school-based, and out-patient hospital settings. I completed my residency working with traumatized children and families at UC Davis Children’s Hospital CAARE Center and spent my Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Harbor UCLA Medical Center specializing in pediatric trauma, attachment, and adoption-related issues. My dissertation research  focused on factors that contribute to secure attachment in adoptive families.


I earned a Masters of Arts degree in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2002. With this degree, I worked in private practice, in residential treatment, and in the private sector of foster care as a Social Worker, Clinical Supervisor, and Assistant Executive Director.

In addition to private practice, I am passionate about training developing clinicians. I am an adjunct professor Azusa Pacific University, where I teach doctoral classes on child and adolescent development, spiritual integration, and child abuse. Additionally, I provide supervision to approximately 20 pre-licensed clinicians at APU’s Community Counseling Center, where I created and oversee our clinical Trauma Track. 

I have trained and/or am certified in several empirically proven treatment models to reduce or eliminate symptoms including: Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), Trauma Focused-Cognitive Behavior Therapy (TF-CBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Parent Child Interactive Therapy (PCIT), Seeking Safety, Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Theraplay, Collaborative Problem Solving, and Psychological First Aid.


I have also trained in the school of life. As a mom of four neurodivergent children, and a foster-adoptive parent, I have experienced the trial-by-fire that is being a parent. I sympathize with parenting struggles first-hand, and have practical tools to reduce your stress and increase personal/familial meaning and joy.

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