Why do people seek therapy?
Asking for help in the form of therapy is a sign of courage. People come into therapy for many reasons. Some need help in handling unexpected changes in their lives or in long term problems. While others seek and personal growth. When a person feels overwhelmed by guilt, doubt, anxiety, or despair, therapy can help. Therapy can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping for issues such as depression, anxiety, lack of confidence, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, bereavement, spiritual conflicts, stress management, and creative blocks. People seeking counseling and therapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards improving their relationships, emotional well being and achieving their goals.
What can I expect in a therapy session?
During sessions you talk about the primary concerns and issues that led you to seek therapy. A session lasts 45 minutes. Usually weekly sessions are best. Some people who are in crisis or extreme distress need more than one session per week, at least until the crisis passes. During the time between sessions it is beneficial to think about and process what was discussed. At times, you may be asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, examples such as reading a relevant article or keeping a journal. For therapy to "work," you must be an active participant, both in and outside of the therapy sessions.
What benefits can I expect from working with a therapist?
A number of benefits are available from participating in psychotherapy. Often it is helpful just to know that someone understands. Therapy can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. Many people find therapy to be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, and the hassles of daily life. 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:
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
- Getting "unstuck" from unhealthy patterns - breaking old behaviors and develop new ones
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Improving communications skills - learn how to listen to others, and have others listen to you
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself and your personal goals and value
- Find new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Discovering new ways to solve problems
What if I don't know what my goals are for therapy?
I will work with you to develop individualized and specific goals. It may take several sessions before a direction is clarified. During the course of therapy your goals may change. However, establishing a direction for therapy will help you get the most out of the experience.
Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work?
There is a confusing array of insurance arrangements. The first thing you should do is check with your insurance carrier. Check your coverage carefully and find the answers to the following questions:
- Do I have out patient mental health benefits?
- Do I need an authorization number?
- How much is my co-pay?
- What is my deductible and has it been met?
- How many sessions per calendar year does my plan cover?
- How much do you pay for an out-of-net provider?
Is therapy confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and a psychotherapist. Information is not disclosed without written permission. However, there are number of exceptions to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependant adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person/s. The therapist must notify the police and inform the intended victim.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to enlist their cooperation in insuring their safety. If they do not cooperate, further measures may be taken without their permission in order to ensure their safety.
In your first session I will review in depth confidentiality and the legal exceptions. I will also provide you with written information for you to keep.