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Common Questions

Why do people seek therapy?

People come into therapy for many reasons. Some need to respond to unexpected changes in their lives, while others seek self-exploration and personal growth. Therapy can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping for issues such as depression, anxiety, lack of confidence, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, loss and grief, spiritual conflicts, and stress management. People seeking psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change, and create greater awareness in their lives.

What can I expect in a therapy session?

During sessions you are expected to talk about the primary concerns and issues in your life. A session lasts 50 minutes, but some people request longer sessions. 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 what was discussed. At times, you may be asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as practicing stress reduction techniques, listening to a CD, or reading a relevant book. 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:

  • Attaining a better understanding of yourself and your personal goals and values.
  • Developing skills for improving your relationships.
  • Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy.
  • Find new ways to cope with stress and anxiety.
  • Managing anger, depression, and other emotional pressures.
  • Getting “unstuck” from unhealthy patterns – breaking old behaviors and develop new ones.
  • Discovering new ways to solve problems.
  • Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence.

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 dependent adult or elder abuse.
  • If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person(s).
  • If a client intends to harm himself or herself.

How can I pay for therapy?

Many of my clients prefer to simply pay for their sessions out-of-pocket. They just don’t want to take the risk of having information shared with or by their insurance company. Although your information is confidential, it is necessary to provide the insurance company with some personal information in order to process claims and request additional sessions.I accept cash and check payments and credit, debit, flexible spending and health savings card payments. I also accept some insurance plans. There is a confusing array of insurance arrangements so be sure to ask about that when you contact me for an appointment. 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 mental health benefits?
  • How do I get an authorization number?
  • What is my deductible and has it been met?
  • How many sessions per calendar year does my plan cover?
  • Is primary care physician approval required?

If you’d like to use insurance but it happens to be a plan that I don’t accept, many clients pay out-of-pocket and then submit their receipt to their insurance company for reimbursement. You need to check with your insurance company for how they handle an out-of-network provider.