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, and for whatever reason, they 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.
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.
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 can 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 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.
I don’t want to just talk about how I’m feeling; I actually want things to change in my life.
I think there’s a big misconception out there that therapy means just talking and talking about the past without ever taking action on the present. I certainly don’t operate that way as a therapist. While we will always create space to talk about your past and the feelings that surface as we explore this, I’m a very direct and engaged therapist and actively work with my clients to design interventions, exercises, and thoughtful action steps if that’s what you’re looking for as part of therapy.
If I go to therapy there must be something wrong with me; I should be able to handle this/figure it out on my own, right?
Making the decision to seek out therapy isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s a wise act of self-care to reach out for support from professionals when there’s a challenge you need help with. You’d reach out to a doctor for help setting your broken bone or to a lawyer if you needed help filing divorce paperwork, wouldn’t you? When it comes to your mental and emotional health it’s no different. Reaching out for professional support is an act of self-care to address the challenges you’re facing.
How do I know if you’re the right therapist for me?
Choosing a therapist is a very personal decision. Therapy is only as effective as the relationship between therapist and client and because of this I believe the best way to determine if a psychotherapist is right for you is to book a session and simply meet with her or him and to trust your instincts when you are with them. Ask yourself: “Can I see myself feeling safe and comfortable with this person? Does it seem like they *get* me ?” You can also ask yourself this question during and after an initial phone consult before you book that first session
Is what I share confidential?
Absolutely. What you share with me in our sessions is completely confidential except in the case of 1) immediate threat of harm to self or other, 2) suspicion of child or dependent elder abuse, 3) in the case of a court subpoena. We’ll discuss all of this and my other office policies during your initial intake session.