You say you work with women, but will you work with other people?
For your success in therapy, the most important thing is finding the right “fit” with a therapist. My experience is predominantly with women (those who identify as such) and is extensive with young adults; these are the people with whom I do my best work. I keep a solid list of practitioners to whom I will refer you if we don’t feel like the right match.
I think I might want to try counseling with you, but I’m not sure. Is there a way to explore that?
Yes! I offer a complimentary 10 minute “get to know each other” phone consultation, where we can talk about what you’re looking for and how I work as a therapist. I am a one-person show, so when you call or email, you reach me directly – no assistants or schedulers. If we feel like it makes sense for you to make an appointment, we can go from there. If it seems like I’m not the right fit, I can refer you to another counselor or therapist.
Why do you not accept insurance?
I have elected not to participate in any insurance panels, largely due to being a one-person practice and the extensive paperwork, documentation, filing, and waiting periods demanded by insurance in order in order to pay providers. By not participating with insurance companies, my time outside of client sessions is available for researching and reading about current mental health trends, participating in professional development trainings, and taking advantage of continuing education courses to best serve my clients. In short, through this model, I am able to keep YOUR CARE the absolute focus of my practice, which I believe is imperative. Additionally, I have clients for whom complete privacy is hugely important. By not participating with insurance, our work together is not connected to your medical record. Insurance demands that a diagnosis be made in order for payment; I strive to work with you as YOU, not as a diagnosis or illness.
How does the counseling process even work? Am I going to be on a couch like I see in the movies with therapists? What does this even look like?
Currently, we will “meet” online through an online, secure platform. As best we can, we’ll attempt to set it up like we’re in a room together, sitting near one another, chatting. I encourage you to find a private, quiet place for our sessions, and it’s even ok to put a “do not disturb” sign on your door so that people know not to bother you. And no, no one will be laying down on a couch!
When starting out in counseling, sessions typically occur weekly, and each session lasts 50 minutes. We may at some point choose to meet less frequently, but it’s important to plan one session per week for a while so that we can build our relationship and know where we’re going.
What happens in my first counseling session?
The first session in a counseling relationship is typically a longer session than usual, around 90 minutes, rather than a normal 50 minute session. It can feel a lot more “clinical” than later sessions because in this session we will review in detail all of the paperwork you have completed prior to the appointment that tells me about your history and your interest in seeking counseling. Similar to a medical appointment in which your doctor asks a lot of questions about the pile of paper they asked you to fill out, I’ll probably ask a lot more questions in this session than I will later on. This is to give me a general structure for understanding your past, present, and what you hope to see in your future so that, together, we can begin to work to set goals for counseling.
What are your rates like, generally?
To keep it simple, the fee for standard 50-minute sessions is $125, and the initial (longer) session is $150 (for 75-90 minutes.) Phone calls that last beyond 10 minutes are billed in 15 minute increments (ie, 15 minute call – $36, 30 minute call – $72, etc.)
Are you available for groups or presentations?
Sure thing! I have done a variety of workshops and presentations on topics such as self-care, Motivational Interviewing/Change Models, active listening strategies, and boundary setting in relationships, among other things. I’m happy to talk about customizing something that might meet your needs.
If we work together for a little while, and I realize it’s not working for me, then what?
A counseling relationship is built on open, honest communication and trust. If there’s something that’s not working between us, I invite you to talk with me about it. What’s most important to me is that you find someone that you can really open up to; someone who really “gets” you, and if that person isn’t me, I am happy to make a referral to another practitioner.
It’s time for my first appointment, and I’m super nervous. Is this normal?
Absolutely! You’re about to talk about private things to someone you don’t know – it’s going against everything you’ve probably been told to do, so it’s a good thing that you feel nervous. I assure you that, though scary, I’ve been there too, and the only way is up. I’ll do my best to make you feel comfortable; we’re in this together.