I’ve never been in therapy before. My family doesn’t believe in it and my friends would think I was weak or just plain crazy. How does therapy work?
The first thing I would suggest is for you to quiet the “outside chatter” of what others in your life think and the stigma they have about getting outside help. I offer a 15 minute FREE consultation so you can get a sense of if we would be a good fit to proceed with therapy. After that, the stages are doing an intake to get information, assessment based on the information you shared, deciding on what the goals you want to achieve in therapy are, treatment planning based on your goals, interventions to help you achieve your goals and finally preparing for termination.
How long does therapy usually take?
There are many variables from what the presenting issue is you are seeking help with to the amount of distress it is causing you, the amount of time you have been dealing with it, and the treatment modality used. The process is individual to each person so there is no one answer that fits for everyone. Know that you can decide at anytime to end or terminate therapy for whatever reason you decide.
What if some uncomfortable things come up or I don’t agree with something you suggest?
More than likely some uncomfortable things will come up but I will follow your lead and adjust to the pace of what works for you. It is my experience that if something uncomfortable does come up, your brain and body have decided you are ready to handle knowing it and then finding your way through it. Communicating your concern about an intervention or resource I have suggested is part of finding your voice. This is a positive thing and just because I suggest something doesn’t mean you have to do it. You get to choose.
What is the most important thing to look for when choosing a therapist?
Look for a person that you can build trust and rapport with. You will be sharing a lot of personal info and need to know in your gut that this person “gets” you and will be providing a caring container for the information you shared and right now cannot carry by yourself. Look for a therapist who can carry it for you until you can.
What can I do to get the most out of therapy?
Come to therapy with an open mind and a willingness to look within. Be present and engaged in your sessions, do the homework the therapist assigns between sessions, practice and integrate into your everyday life the new things you learn that could help improve your quality of life.
Do you take insurance?
No. I have chosen to accept private pay clients because health plans offer little to no coverage for mental health services. You need to get pre-authorization when you need the help NOW. It reduces the confidentiality of your information because multiple people have access to your information. You are letting a third party who may have no knowledge of what they are authorizing decide if you get services and how many sessions you are allotted. The therapist is required to give you a psychiatric diagnosis which could negatively impact you via a denial of insurance when applying for disability or life insurance or repercussions of a diagnosis in situations where you may be required to reveal a mental health disorder diagnosis on your record. A psychiatric diagnosis can also be brought in to a court case. So for all these reasons I like the client to be the one to decide when, how and for how long they get help and that their information remains as confidential as possible and has little chance to be used against them in legal matters.