What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
I offer a free 30-minute in person or phone consultation to learn about how we may be a good fit working together. Moving forward, you would come in to sign a Informed Consent and Professional Disclosure Statement. We would also do a full intake and come up with a plan for treatment. If for some reason, working together may not be in your best interest, I can provide referrals.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire therapist?
One of the most important factors that predicts successful therapy is the relationship between the therapist and client. The working alliance between us must allow you to trust, feel safe, and allow openness. So in many ways, finding a good therapist is very personal. I pay particular attention to aligning and attuning to my clients to build safe, collaborative, and authentic connections that will serve healing and growth.
What questions should I consider to decide if therapy is right for me?
The most important thing you are hiring is the relationship you will be forming with the therapist. So it is important not just to think, but to feel if you feel safe and open with the therapist. If you don’t, it is important to consider why, especially if being open with others in your life is an issue. It could be that if you feel safe “enough” and also feel some challenge or edge for you to push through, then the therapist could also be a good fit. It’s best to have a consult with the therapist before doing a full session. Ask about how they work and get a sense of how you feel meeting with them for the first time. Any good therapist should be able to help you with referrals and won’t take it personally if you decide it is not a good fit.
Improvements and Risks of Counseling
Also, it is important to remember that therapy is a process, and as such, it can take time and patience before experiencing improvements. Counseling is not without risk. Some people experience an increase in feelings of stress, especially during the early stages of counseling. Some problems may seem to get worse before they get better. Exploring longstanding, deeply seated issues can sometimes initially seem to aggravate rather than help the issue, especially in couples. You may also experience other unique consequences of counseling. I encourage you to talk with me about them as and if they occur.
Do You take my Insurance?
Depends. I can provide information that you will need to give to your insurance company. If you want to explore this option, call your insurance company and ask them these questions:
- Do I have out-of-network mental health coverage?
- Do my benefits cover services provided by a Licensed Professional Counselor Registered Intern?
- How many sessions are covered and what is the coverage amount?
What types of customers have you worked with?
Individual adults, couples, families, groups
What is the typical commitment time for doing therapy?
Depends. I’ve worked with clients who in a matter of a few months have felt much better about themselves and their relationships. I also work with clients who want ongoing support. I generally start with clients on a weekly basis. With couples it is sometimes difficult to schedule a weekly time, so I make it an option to start out seeing couples on a every other week basis. As clients progress and meet goals, meeting less frequently is an option.
Can I post my experience online about my therapy experience with you?
Posting a review of my services is your right as a client and it is entirely up to you to decide whether you wish to write a review. But I gently discourage clients from posting reviews of my practice for the reasons below.
1. The American Counseling Association’s Ethics Code states that it is unethical for counselors to solicit testimonials: Section C.3.b. “Counselors who use testimonials do not solicit them from current clients, former clients, or any other persons who may be vulnerable to undue influence. Counselors discuss with clients the implications of and obtain permission for the use of any testimonial.” Since you may decide to return to therapy with me at a later date, I do not request testimonials from people who have ended therapy with me.
2. Unlike other business owners who may respond to their reviews, as a counselor, I must provide confidentiality to my clients. This means I am restricted from responding in any way that acknowledges whether someone has been in my care.
3. If we work together, I hope we can discuss your feelings about our work directly and in person. This may not always feel comfortable, but discussion of your positive and negative reactions to our work can be an important part of your therapy. If we are not a good match, I’m always happy to help you find a therapist who better suits you.
4. If you do write something about my practice, note that this is a public forum. To preserve your privacy, consider using a pseudonym that is not linked to your regular email address or friend networks.
5. If you believe that I (or any licensed mental health professional) have done something harmful, consider contacting your state licensing board to make a formal complaint. This may protect other consumers of therapy services. Be aware that details of your therapy may come up if there is a formal investigation.