How will I know if you are the right counselor for me?
You should know by the first session whether I’m the right fit for you. You should feel accepted and emotionally safe during our time together. There should also be a rapport that is present and you should feel confident that I can not only connect with you but can help you with the issues you are bringing into counseling. If we determine that this is not a good fit, then I would be more than happy to refer you to another counselor.
How can counseling help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in counseling. Counselors can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for such issues as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief and stress management. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Counselors can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from counseling depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from counseling include the following:
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek counseling
- 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 family or marriage
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
What privacy (confidentiality) will I have?
Any contact between a counselor and client is bound by the statutory and ethical standards of my profession as a Licensed Professional Counselor as well as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996). The purpose of confidentiality is to provide a safe environment where a client will freely discuss his problems, without fear that very personal information will be revealed to others. This increases trust and the likelihood that all aspects of a given problem will be brought into the open. Confidentiality then is important for a good counselor-client relationship.
By law, there are three issues that can’t be kept confidential. A counselor is legally required to report cases
- of child or elder abuse.
- when a client is an imminent suicide risk.
- when the client is threatening harm to another person.
In these cases, confidentiality must be broken, and the proper authorities will be notified. These exceptions are for the protection of the client and others concerned. These are important and necessary exceptions. Any other disclosure of information about one’s counseling requires written permission.
How long are the sessions?
Sessions are 50 minutes long, but you have the option to go 75 or 100 minutes if our schedules permit. Often people will schedule longer sessions for marriage counseling as well as more intensive type work.
How often do we meet?
For best results, at least once a week is recommended. Every other week is acceptable for progress. Every three weeks or more is acceptable for maintenance.
How many sessions will I need?
When you come into counseling, we will discuss in the first session how many sessions you might need. Though the exact number is usually not known, especially at the outset, we will set some goals that can best help us assess the length of counseling in upcoming sessions. If there has been an issue present in your life for a long time, you may need a considerable amount of time (several months to a year). But if the issue is relatively isolated and new, you may need as little as 3-5 sessions. I usually recommend to people that they find a consistent day and time that they can come to counseling for us to have time to work and build momentum on the presenting issues in order to see progress. Usually, after 3-5 sessions we can reassess where we are in the process and how much more time you may need.
What model of counseling do you practice?
My primary model is called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, but definitely not exclusively. My goal is to make a custom-made method for each client, however, CBT is very effective, evidence-based for such things as mood disturbances. Difficulties in the present are the main focus. Earlier life experiences will be discussed as they may relate to the development of present-day difficulties. Patterns of thinking and behavior are evaluated and targeted for change. The goal of counseling is for you to develop strategies that help you to recognized and change old ways of thinking and behaving.
Is medication a substitute for counseling?
No. It is well-established fact that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Medication is for symptom relief and in some cases a great and meaningful relief while working through counseling. Counseling addresses the cause of distress and the behavior patterns that curb progress. In many cases, once the root cause for distress is managed or eliminated, medication is no longer needed. In whatever the case, you can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness.
Do you integrate your faith into counseling?
I integrate my faith as a Christian into the counseling process when it is desired by the client. On the other hand, I work with people who express their faith in a variety of ways as well as those who express no interest in faith or God. My job is not to impose my views on the client, but to help the client work through the issues they bring into counseling. I am comfortable and confident in working with people, regardless of their faith perspectives. If you have any questions or concerns about this, please feel free to contact me.
What are your fees?
50-minute session – $135
75-minute (1h 15m) session – $199
100-minute (1h 40m) session – $260
Do you accept insurance?
I am an out-of-network provider and do not accept insurance. Full payment is due at each session. I can provide a super-bill at the end of each session, which you can send to your insurance carrier for reimbursement. Services may be covered in full or in part by your health insurance or employee benefit plan. Please check your coverage carefully to verify specifics of your particular insurance coverage and ask the following questions:
- Do I have mental health benefits?
- What is my deductible and has it been met?
- How many sessions per calendar year does my plan cover?
- How much does my plan cover for an out-of-network provider?
- What is the coverage amount per counseling session?
- Is approval required from my primary care physician?
WHAT IF I FEEL SUICIDAL?
- Call 911, or
- Go to your local hospital Emergency Room