Meet Kim Virrueta, a licensed therapist offering counseling in OC, Corona & Riverside for individuals, couples & families facing cancer or illness.

I have a passion for working with people of all ages & families who are facing cancer or another life-threatening illness. I will walk alongside you through emotional pain, and help you build coping skills and resilience so you can weather this storm. Using my love of creativity and play, I bring in art, play therapy, sand tray, and medical play into my sessions with children.

I'm a blessed wife and mother of three adult children. My mission after raising my kids was to finish my Masters in Counseling to help individuals & their families get through cancer or serious illness with the mental health support they need.

From a very early age, I wanted to be a pediatric nurse. I loved the idea of helping kids in the medical setting. After I had children of my own, I soon realized that I didn't want to be the person giving shots and making kids cry!

During my bachelors degree, I completed numerous Child Life related courses and did a practicum at CHOC Children's Hospital in their Child Life Department (surgical, hem/onc, neurology, & infusion). It was then that I found the perfect blending of mental health and medical care: medical family therapy as a licensed MFT/PCC. My career path was set!

In May 2022, I began providing counseling to Crystal Roses, a non-profit organization that works with individuals and families facing life-threatening illnesses such as cancer.

I use evidence-based methods to address my clients' presenting concerns. Whether you're experiencing a medical illness, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, parenting challenges, or just need a safe & non-judgmental person to talk to, I'm here for you.

My clients would describe me as kind, warm, gentle, and goal-focused. We get A LOT done in sessions! I offer compassion, empathy, encouragement, and kindness while remaining committed to my clients' healing, growth, and specific goals they have set for their lives.

I am a follower of Christ, which means that I offer unconditional love to all humans, regardless of their personal beliefs & values. This plays out in how I show love and embody love toward others.

I am a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, having earned 3000+ hours of counseling experience starting in February 2020. I passed the CA State Licensing Exam in July of 2024. I am employed at Institute of Advanced Studies, a non-profit.

Get in touch for a free 10-minute phone consultation to see if we're a good fit. Yes, I am currently accepting new clients!

Kim Virrueta, therapist counselor in orange county, ca, corona, riverside | cancer illness
Kim Virrueta, therapist counselor in orange county, ca, corona, riverside | cancer illness


  • 2016: Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education

  • 2018: Bachelors of Science in Child & Adolescent Development

  • 2021: Masters of Science in Marriage & Family Therapy

  • Reg. Assoc. Marriage & Family Therapist #126957

  • Reg. Assoc. Professional Clinical Counselor #9998


  • 2005-2019: Prayer & Share Counselor at Harvest C.F.

  • 2016-2020: Child Life Volunteer at CHOC Children's

  • 2016: Practicum in Child Life at CHOC Children's

  • 2017-2018: Practicum in Early Intervention at RIO

  • 2020-2021: MFT Trainee, Institute of Advanced Studies

  • 2021-2024: Registered Associate MFT (3000+ hours)

  • July 2024: Licensed MFT #148148

  • I work with the following clients:

    • Private pay clients in California

    • Thomas House Family Shelter

    • Higher Ground Youth & Family Services

    • Crystal Roses (Counselor & Advisory Board Member)


  • I am a Certified Grief Professional (CGP)

Filling in the gaps...

During my masters degree, I realized that CACREP standards for counseling training did not include learning how to treat individuals, couples, and families who are facing a serious illness such as cancer. Sadly, these gaps mean that counselors & therapists are not fully equipped to help this population after they graduate.

Medical family therapy is the specialty area that treats the mental health needs of patients & families facing illness or cancer; the majority of these therapists work in the hospital & medical settings. This means that very few therapists in our communities are qualified to treat these patients & families.

Therefore, the need is great for providing continuity of mental health care for these patients. This is my passion and privilege!

I provide resources to educate counselors & therapists about this important area of our clinical work so that, together, we can all be better prepared to use medical play and medical family therapy to effectively treat my clients and their families. With a serious medical diagnosis, the entire family is affected.

You can access my free resources below. Please follow me on Instagram and Facebook for education, tips, and interventions to help you gain competence in treating clients facing a serious medical diagnosis. If you or a loved one are facing illness and would like some free resources, see below.