FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What can therapy do for me?
Therapy can do many things, depending on our focus. Therapy is a collaborative process in which you and I will work towards a better life. For some, this may involve concrete problem solving and behavioral adjustments. For others, this may involve exploring early relationships and experiences, examining patterns in current relationships, and asking questions about life’s purpose and meaning. In our first session we will talk about what brings you to therapy and form an initial plan.
What should I expect during our first session?
This is a common question! Therapy is a strange situation. Where else do you go to an unfamiliar office, fill out some forms, and start to share thoughts/feelings you wouldn’t even share with your best friend? Our first session will be spent discussing what it was that brought you into my office, talking a bit about your history, and developing a plan to help you live a more satisfying life. For some people, this first session will provide a clear direction and we’ll have a good sense how therapy will proceed. For others, this initial session will feel like we’re just scraping the surface, and it will still take some time to grasp what the experience will be like.
What if I don’t feel like its a good fit?
An important task of the first few sessions is to see if we would work well together. There are many reasons why we may or may not be a great fit. I understand if you would prefer to work with another clinician–I do not take such decisions personally. I encourage people to commit to three sessions, with me or with anyone else (except if there is reason to suspect misconduct on the part of the therapist), to get a sense of how it will be. We are all bad at predicting our own preferences, so committing to several sessions may reveal information that changes our opinion. However, if we meet and you have reservations, let’s discuss them as early (and as frankly) as possible. If after discussing these issues you would like referrals, I'm happy to provide names or help you find your own. Due to the nature of the work, I do not provide refunds for time spent in session, but I provide referrals without charge.
Is there anyone you don’t see?
Due to practical limitations, there are patients for whom my services are not a great fit. If you need 24/7 access to a therapist, recently left the hospital because of a suicidal attempt or serious threat, need treatment primarily for substance abuse, or are legally required to attend therapy–my services will not be appropriate. I do not provide couples therapy, family therapy, or act as an expert for legal proceedings. For the sake of your treatment, please call if you have questions and let’s have an honest conversation regarding your needs. Finding a therapist is hard–I would rather help you find someone who will be a good fit than to discover after several sessions that my services aren’t going to be adequate.
Is what I say confidential?
Absolutely. I am legally and ethically required to maintain the confidentiality of what we discuss, with a few exceptions. These include serious intent to harm yourself or others, in the case of abuse or neglect of children or dependent adults, or (rarely) with a court-ordered subpoena.
How much will this cost me?
Check here for current rates.
How often will we meet?
New patients are always seen weekly or more often. Most patients spend some time in weekly sessions before terminating. Infrequently, after working together for a while we may mutually agree that every-other-week sessions make sense rather than a full termination, and I have a limited number of slots available for this restricted schedule. Some folks would like to be seen multiple times per week and this is usually available. Multiple sessions per week may be done to increase the depth of therapy, to accomplish a lot of work in a short amount of time, or to help during a particularly challenging time.