I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak?
Not at all! People who ask for help know when they need it and have the ability to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then. You already have some strengths that you’ve used before, that for whatever reason aren’t working right now. Perhaps this problem feels overwhelming and is making it difficult to access your past strengths. In our work together, I’ll help you identify what those strengths are and how to implement them again in what is happening now.
What’s the difference between talking to you or my best friend or family?
The difference is between someone who can do something, and someone who has the training and experience to do that same thing professionally. A mental health professional can help you approach your situation in a new way– teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectations, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, therapy is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing my business.” Lastly, if your situation provokes a great deal of negative emotion, if you’ve been confiding in a friend or family member, there is the risk that once you are feeling better you could start avoiding that person so you aren’t reminded of this difficult time in your life.
Why shouldn’t I just take medication?
Medication alone cannot solve all issues. What medication does is treat the symptoms. Our work together is designed to explore the root of the issue, dig deep into your behavior and teach strategies that can help you accomplish your personal and/or relational goals.
Medication can be effective and is sometimes needed in conjunction with therapy. I am not a doctor and do not prescribe medication. This is something to discuss with your physician.
How does it work? What do I have to do in sessions?
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. I tailor my therapeutic approach to your specific needs. In session it is important that you feel safe, listened to, and comfortable. Please share anything that might make this experience more effective and comfortable for you.
How long will it take?
Unfortunately, this is not possible to say in a general FAQs page. Everyone’s circumstances are unique to them and the length of time therapy may take to allow you to accomplish your goals depends on your desire for personal development, your commitment, and the factors that are driving you to seek therapy in the first place. I recommend weekly therapy until your goals have been reached, then begin adding in more time between sessions before finally ending your therapy. When we work together on identifying and setting your goals, you will have a clearer understanding of how long the process may take.
I want to get the most out of therapy. What can I do to help?
I am so glad you are dedicated to getting the most out of your sessions! Your active participation and dedication is crucial to your success. After all, we only see each other for a session a week. It’s the work you do outside of our sessions that will really help you see your personal growth and development. To help you will usually be given homework each week to complete between sessions.
My partner and I are having problems. Should we be in individual counseling or come together?
If you are concerned about your relationship, and you would both like to work with me, I typically begin with a session together, then see each of you separately for at least one session before resuming therapy together. If there are expressed areas of individual concern, we would discuss how to proceed and whether it would be best in your situation to see another therapist for individual counseling. The reverse would be true if you began in individual therapy and wanted to add couples counseling. There are many concerns to address regarding confidentiality, trust, and what kind of therapy and therapist would best meet your needs. Your relationship is unique, as are your needs for trust and confidentiality. These will be discussed before deciding how to proceed.