Frequently Asked Questions
- What services do you offer?
I offer individual, couples, and family therapy. Individual therapy is with one person (over the age of 18) who wants to work on changing his or her behaviors, emotions, or thoughts. Couples therapy is with two people who want to work on improving their relationship using various communication and listening skills. Family therapy involves working with members of a family who are struggling with relating to each other; by affecting change in one member of the family, other members are also impacted in a positive manner.
- Can I afford therapy?
Yes, because your mental well-being is just as important as your physical well-being. Looking after YOU is the ultimate gift to yourself. Embrace the opportunity to be your Best Self.
- How do I know if therapy is right for me?
You’ll know if therapy is right for you because you’ll feel a rapport with your therapist. It’s about trusting your instincts, and feeling understood and validated. It should feel like your therapist “gets” you and like you’re making progress. If you don’t experience these things, bring it up with your therapist; if they become defensive, then it’s probably not the best fit.
- How does therapy work?
The relationship between you and your therapist is collaborative. By discussing topics that bother you or problems you’ve kept to yourself, things are put into a social context. From there, you and your therapist can create something new – new meanings, new relationships, a new way of speaking. Therapy helps you learn to view things in a different way.
- How do I find a good marriage counselor?
Look for someone who’s experienced working with couples, as couples therapy differs significantly from individual therapy. Find someone with education and training in couples dynamics and interpersonal relationships, and who continues to further their education in this field. Ask the therapist what percentage of their practice consists of couples work. Be sure that you and your partner feel validated and understood by the therapist, and that you both trust the therapist. You can also obtain counselor referrals from your doctor, attorney, or accountant.
- How will I know we can work together?
This is a very important question! You’ll know you can work together if you sense some sort of connection with the therapist. Feeling comfortable to talk about anything that’s bothering you with someone who cares for you is a vital part of the therapeutic relationship. Be open and honest with your therapist – you should feel understood, heard, and accepted just as you are. Therapy won’t be effective if this foundation isn’t properly built. A major objective of the therapeutic relationship is to support the client in making changes they desire to make in their own life.
- How long does it take to do therapy? What kind of results should I expect?
There’s no set time to do therapy – it depends on the issues presented and how quickly or slowly you delve into them. You should expect to feel a little better and hopeful as therapy progresses. When you’re aware of how something impacts you, it then becomes hard NOT to make the changes because your awareness doesn’t simply disappear. Throughout the course of therapy, you might feel like you’re making improvements and you’re taking two steps forward; and you may fall into your previous patterns, resulting in you taking one step back. This is a perfectly normal process! It takes time for new habits to form because our old ways are easy and familiar. Eventually, progress WILL happen, as your awareness leads you to revisit the situation.
- Do I need to take medications?
You may need to take medications if you aren’t able to function effectively at your workplace or in your home life, which might look like missing a lot of days at the office or not completing tasks around your house. You’ll be provided with psychiatric referrals so that you can get medications to help you function better, which will increase the effectiveness of therapy. It’s all about being stable enough to take on what’s bothering you deep down.
- Will you be able to help me? How?
I’ll be able to help by providing a safe, objective, and supportive place for you to let out what’s troubling you. I’ll offer different perspectives, suggestions, and tools on how to make the desired changes. It’s up to you to try them out to see what does and doesn’t fit. We’ll work together to figure out what works best for you.
- How do I inform my partner that I want marriage counseling?
If you and your partner have been fighting, struggling with financial issues, or don’t know how to communicate effectively, then one of you might seek outside help on an individual basis; as therapy progresses, it’s ideal to attend sessions together to work on the challenging issues. When talking with your partner about marriage counseling, explain things from your perspective, such as, “I’m feeling down about how we’re communicating and I’d like for us to get some help.” By framing it this way, your partner is more likely to hear what you’re saying and be open to the suggestion. If you broach the subject with a phrase like, “You don’t know how to communicate and we need help,” your partner will likely become defensive, thereby closing the door on the idea. I encourage you to ask for what you want or need from your partner – they’ll probably be more open to hearing your request this way.