Is therapy appropriate for me?
Seeking out therapy is a very personal choice and in many ways an act of courage rather than weakness. There are many reasons why people come to therapy. Sometimes it is to deal with long-standing issues or problems with anxiety or depression. In other situations, it is a response to unexpected changes in one's life such as a divorce or work transition. Many seek the advice of a therapist as they pursue their own personal growth and development. Working with a skilled therapist can provide insight, support and new strategies for all types of life's struggles. Therapy can help address a variety of issues including anxiety, depression, conflict, grief, stress management and general life passages. Therapy is right for anyone who is interested in maximizing their human potential by taking responsibility, increasing self-awareness and working towards change in their lives.
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone experiences challenges in life, and while in many situations you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've encountered, there is nothing wrong with seeking extra support when you need it. In fact, seeking help is something to be admired in exercising courage and wisdom to receive help in working through life's difficulties. You are also taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Effective therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support by providing you the tools you need to avoid triggers, and alter damaging patterns, overcome internal and external challenges.
How can therapy help me?
A number of benefits and results are obtainable from participating in psychotherapy. As an experienced and dedicated therapist, I will make every effort to provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship struggles, unresolved issues from the family of origin, grief, stress management, and creative stagnation. My goal with all of my clients is for them to look back over their decision to seek my services and feel it was the best decision they made all year. Over the past 30 years, I have successfully helped clients with a wide array of human problems and view the therapeutic process as collaborative and creative. I tend not to adopt a “cookie cutter” approach but view each person as an opportunity to co-create a unique solution for their presenting problem(s). I make every effort to provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem and to point you in the direction toward a solution and positive change, but you do your share of the work and receive the victory lap when the therapy goals have been successfully completed. Over the years some of the benefits my clients have received include:
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Resolving the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communications and listening skills
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your marriage or family
- Improving self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
What is the experience of therapy like?
- I view every therapy session uniquely and cater to each individual and their specific therapy goals. It is usual and customary for me to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during a therapy session which usually lasts from forty-five to fifty minutes. In my practice, therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. In my practice, I utilize both in-session and out-of-session tasks and assignments depending upon the nature of the presenting concern. I believe it is important to process and integrate skills into your life between sessions. From my clinical experience, I have found over the years therapy is most effective when you as a client become an active participant in the process by taking responsibility and working towards self-change. Some of what you can expect of me in the therapeutic process is:
- Compassion, respect, empathy, and understanding
- Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
- Practical strategies for enacting positive change
- Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Can medication be used as a substitute for therapy?
In certain cases, a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you. Most of the outcome research supports the established fact a long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. While I believe sometimes medication can be assisting in treating overt symptoms, I do not believe in a “magic pill” which addresses the cause of human distress and the behavior patterns that obstruct client progress. Instead, therapy addresses the causes of human problems and helps you achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being. I like the expression, “If you give someone a fish he or she can eat for a day. If you teach someone how to fish they can eat for a lifetime.” The idea of learning skills toward greater health is more sustaining than providing a temporary cure.
Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work?
To determine if you have mental or behavioral health coverage, the first thing you should do is check with your insurance carrier. Check your coverage carefully and find the answers to the following questions:
- What are my mental health benefits?
- What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
- How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
- How much does my insurance pay for an in-network or out-of-network provider?
- Is there an annual insurance deductible to be met prior to benefits being covered?
- Is my practice listed on your panel of covered providers?
- Is approval required from my primary care physician or managed care company?
Is therapy confidential?
Communications between my clients and myself are held in the strictest of confidence to meet the privacy needs of my clients. In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and a psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse. I am required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. I am required to notify the police.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. I will make every effort to work with individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.
- In response to a subpoena.
Please ask if you need further clarification regarding any of these exceptions
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