Whether you are thinking about attending counseling for the first time or have met with someone in the past, people usually have many questions before they meet with me. Here are the answers to some of the most common questions.
Is my problem serious enough to meet with a counselor? (this is probably the question I am asked most often)
You don't need to have had a major traumatic event or mental illness to seek the services of a mental health professional. In fact, it's great to come in before small problems become major crises, symptoms will be less severe and treatment time is generally less.
I often meet with people who want to check in about parenting strategies and tools, have questions about their child's development or want suggestions for ways to handle difficult situations with family and friends. Some people feel their family could do a better job communicating or would like to strengthen the relationship between themselves and their children. These are all great reasons to seek counseling.
My child/teen doesn't like to talk about their feelings, especially with strangers. How will counseling work?
This is why it is essential for your child to meet with a therapist who has extensive knowledge of child development. Children frequently are unable to communicate their thoughts and feelings verbally, it is my role to get creative in meeting your child's needs without the dreaded "couch talk". I utilize play, art, role play, stories and games effectively in my work with children. Most children, even the most reluctant ones usually want to come back for another visit.
Do you only meet with children?
I specialize in working with children both individually and with their families. I do work with parents without seeing their children, these sessions usually focus on providing support to parents in the form of parenting tools, information about child development and discussing issues related to family dynamics. We will discuss your individual situation to determine who should be coming to sessions.
What types of concerns do you address?
I most often treat children for anxiety, depression, ADHD, and behavioral issues as well as children and families experiencing life changes such as divorce, separation, or the death of a loved one.
My child is very young, is it possible they are experiencing anxiety?
The short answer is yes- many children, even very young ones struggle with anxiety. Anxiety is among the most common mental health conditions, it is also highly treatable. Some degree of worry is normal and adaptive but when is gets in the way of daily activities or keeps your child from being happy and having fun it may be time to consult with your pediatrician or mental health provider. Anxiety in children can manifest in many forms- stomach aches, tearfulness, clinginess, difficulty falling or staying asleep. Through counseling, children and parents can learn a variety of tools to take control of excessive worry.
Do you prescribe medication?
I do not prescribe medication. If you feel that medication could be helpful to you/your child I can provide you with a referral to a psychiatrist.
Do you use a specific theory of counseling?
Take a look at my Approach for a detailed explanation.
Can we talk before I schedule an appointment?
Absolutely. I usually spend 15-20 minutes with clients on the phone before booking an initial session. This will allow you to ask me questions and to determine whether we would be a good fit.
What is your office like?
Our office suite has a number of rooms to meet the needs of our clients. We have a family room appropriate for adults and larger groups, a play room, and a movement room where kids can be active during our session. We have a comfortable waiting room for parents and siblings.
How long is a session?
Sessions are generally 50 minutes long. They may be longer if there are multiple family members involved or if a situation is particularly complex.
Do you accept insurance?
I do not accept insurance at this time. At the end of each month I will provide you with a "super-bill". This will indicate the billing codes and other information that you need for reimbursement from your insurer. All insurance companies reimburse at a different rate for "out of network providers". I encourage you to find out what your rate is so there are no surprises. I am able to accept HSA debit and credit cards.
I'm not sure if you can treat the problem I am having
Give me a call- If your concerns are outside my area of expertise I have a number of highly experienced colleagues I can refer to.