Q: What will happen during my first appointment?
A: Your first appointment will be a consultation during which you will tell me why you have come to see me. We will decide whether we are a good match to work together.
Q: What will happen during regular appointments?
A: At the beginning of each session, you will be asked what your agenda is for that session and what you'd like to take away from it. You will be asked thought provoking questions to respond to. I'll give you a variety of suggestions and perspectives. I'll listen to you with acceptance and compassion, without judging you. Each session may include a combination of talking, psychodrama (simply stated, the use of role plays), Emotional Freedom Techniques™, guided imagery and meditation, depending on what you feel works best for you.
Q: How long are the sessions?
A: You can choose sessions ranging from 30 to 120 minutes, based on your needs, goals, time availability and financial circumstances. Some people also prefer Custom Care/VIP days where I meet with them for a half or full day.
Q: What can I expect from you?
A: You can expect a very high degree of professionalism and respect and an awareness that it takes courage to seek professional help. I recognize that you might, at least initially, feel uncomfortable discussing your pain and I am very sensitive to this. You can also expect that while I take your concerns very seriously and do my best to help you with them, at times I also use humor to lighten things up.
Q: How long will I need to be in counseling?
A: This depends on the issues that you need to address, your Questions by the clientgoals, whether you have been in counseling before, your level of insight, your willingness and ability to follow through with action plans and suggestions, the pace that you are comfortable with, whether you have external supports and whether you are in a combination of individual and group counseling. Being in both, as most of my clients are, will facilitate your growth, healing and the achievement of your goals most quickly.
Q: Is what I share with you confidential?
A: Your confidentiality is guaranteed by federal privacy laws and by the ethics and guidelines of my profession. Information about you can only be shared if you give me written permission to do. However, this does not apply in situations where a person is a danger to himself or herself or to others, or where child abuse is suspected. If you are seeking to have your sessions covered by insurance, the insurance company may require information about your treatment to be disclosed to them, but again, this can only be done after you give me your written consent.
Q: How will I know if I'm getting better?
A: When you start to notice that you are achieving your goals, making behavioral changes and feeling happier, calmer and more fulfilled, you will know that you are getting better.
Q: What are your thoughts about the use of medication in conjunction with counseling?
A: I encourage people to try dietary changes, to exercise, to use relaxation techniques and to try more holistic approaches to healing. I prefer to see medication used as a last resort. However, there are situations and conditions for which medication is absolutely needed and I support this. Please note that I am not a medical doctor and I cannot prescribe medication.
Q: How can I learn more about psychotherapy?
A: An article on the Mayo Clinic website gives an excellent overview of the benefits and different types of psychotherapy: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/psychotherapy/MH00009 .
Q: Do you take insurance?
A: My clients pay for their sessions at the time of service. If they request I give them an insurance form which they then submit to their insurance company.
Q: Do you have a sliding scale?
A: In limited circumstances, a sliding scale may be used. However, my clients generally are able to customize the sessions to make counseling affordable. Individual sessions can be shorter (30 minutes), and group counseling is more affordable than individual counseling.