Do I really need therapy?
Virtually anyone can benefit from therapy. I recognize that it is a great privilege to work with my clients on life's greatest challenges. Although sessions can be difficult or painful, clients report being pleased with their progress as well as their decision to seek help. The more open to change and ready to work a client is, the better and more rapidly they will make progress.
What if my spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend refuses to come with me to couples counseling? Many people do not want to open their private lives up to a therapist. They may feel threatened that they will become "the bad guy" in session or that they will have to disclose painful information that they have tried to put behind them. I often tell clients that the only person they can control is themselves. Even if your partner is not on board, it can be beneficial for you to come to therapy as an individual. Your partner will often come around and feel more comfortable when they can witness the positive changes therapy has had on you. In addition, you will benefit, as will your relationship skills and perspectives from your individual sessions.
What does therapy have to do with weight loss?
Many people have the willpower and desire to lose weight, but find themselves on a continuous cycle of weight loss and weight gain. This cycle can become exhausting, both physically and emotionally. Sometimes, you are on this cycle alone; other times, you have created a pattern of eating with your spouse or see these patterns developing in your children. By working together, we can uncover the reasons why you are eating foods that cause you to gain weight and come up with a solid plan to overcome negative behaviors that you have developed regarding food and eating. You can develop a new sense of self, improve your body image and live a fuller life.
What are your office hours?
I see clients Monday through Friday; my first appointment starts at 8 am and my last appointment starts at 5pm. Evening appointments are available on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Other times may be available by special arrangement. If you have a difficult schedule, don't worry; just give me a call, and we can work something out. Or, if you feel ready to make an appointment, please click on my "contact me" page now.
How can therapy help me?
By creating an individualized approach for working with each client, you will receive the support you need, enhanced problem-solving skills, and coping strategies for issues such as self esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, stress management, body image issues and compulsive behaviors. Many people also find that therapists can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from therapy depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
- Overcoming negative behavior patterns and cycles
- Improving your self-esteem, body image and self-confidence
- Managing anger, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
- Improving communication and listening skills
What is therapy like?
I like to assure potential clients that therapy sessions are not like the movies: you laying on a couch with me analyzing your every word or the mistakes of your parents. I will not be there to judge you or your choices. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. Most importantly, you are in control. You will have the opportunity to decide how frequently you feel you need to come and we can work out a plan for you to acheive your goals together. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. It is important to process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For therapy to be most effective, you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions. People seeking psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of therapy:
- A relaxed, non-judgmental environment
- Compassion, respect and understanding
- Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
- Real strategies for enacting positive change
- Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Do you accept insurance?
I do not accept insurance. All sessions are $120-$140 depending on income and are 45 minutes in length. I am open to discussing sliding fee appointments if needed. I decided not to work directly with insurance companies for several reasons. The first is that they require me to give you a mental disorder diagnosis. Many people that I work with would just like new skills or some different strategies to try at home or work, they do not necessarily have a diagnosis. Secondly, many insurance companies put restrictions on what types of services they will cover. For example, many insurance companies do not cover marriage counseling or family counseling, nor do they cover any eating disorders or emotional eating diagnoses. The third reason is that I want you to be actively involved in determining what type of care you are receiving. With insurance, many of your choices and my treatment options are limited. The fourth and most important reason for my not taking insurance is that it jeopardizes your confidentiality. If I submit a bill to the insurance companies on your behalf, your confidential information on your claim may be seen by anyne that may have access to your records and anyone who has a legitimate reason to access the medical database, such as is processed by the insurance company and then stored in a database. Anyone who is involved in the processing or handling of insurance companies and future employers, can view your confidential records. For all of these reasons, I've decided that I would rather provide care to you at rates that are comparable to your insurance company's negotiated prices instead of accepting insurance directly.
Is therapy confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependant adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. The therapist is required to notify the police.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.