Frequently asked questions
Why do people go to therapy and how do I know if I should get help?
I know asking for help can be daunting and scary! People have many different motivations for seeking help. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, new child, move, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, addictions, relationship problems, spiritual conflicts, sexual trauma and creative blocks. Therapy can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get them through these periods. Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life or wanting facilitation with having a direction for their life. In short, people seeking help are ready to meet the challenges in their lives and ready to make changes in their lives.
Do I really need therapy, I can usually handle my problems on my own?
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. Sometimes professional help can be more benificial in times that friends, family, and religious support might leave you feeling stuck and overwhelmed in life. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. Seeking help does not mean being weak but its a sign of courage. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.
Do you accept insurance and how does it work?
To determine if you have mental health coverage through your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is call them. Check your coverage carefully and make sure you understand their answers.
Be sure to ask for OUT OF NETWORK COVERAGE and NOT your In Network benefits.
Ask them the following questions:
Does my insurance cover Out of Network mental health services CPT code 90791 and 90837?
What is my deductible and has it been met for the year?
How many sessions per year does my health insurance cover?
What % is my coinsurance responsibility and how much % does the insurance cover after the deductible has been met?
Do I need any prior authorization?
What is your electronic payor ID and address for the claims?
Please visit the First session and Forms page on this site for more details.
What is therapy like?
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different for each person depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous therapy session. Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions with your therapist (usually weekly). Its like going to the gym, the more consistent you are the faster and more optimal your results.
The ultimate purpose of therapy is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in therapy sessions, your therapist may suggest some things you can do outside of therapy to support your process - such as reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviors or taking action on your goals. People seeking psychotherapy are ready to make positive changes in their lives, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives. The more motivated you are the better and faster results you obtain. Also ensuring that your therapist is a right match for you is very important to the therapeutic realtionship.
Is medication a substitute for therapy?
In some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you. It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. It is commonly known that medication alone or psychotherapy alone cannot solve your issues. For the treatment to be most effective follow your physican's advice and #seekhelp professionally while on medication.
I am afraid to seek help because I don't want people to find out. Is it confidential?
In general, the law and ethics protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and the psychotherapist. No information is disclosed to anyone without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
Suspected child abuse or dependant adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. The therapist is required to notify the police.
If a client intends to harm himself or herself. (Further assessment is done by the therapist (who is also considered a mandatory reporter), to ensure patients level of intention). The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken to protect their life.