Is therapy right for me?
Seeking out therapy is an individual choice. There are many reasons why people come to therapy. Sometimes it is to deal with long-standing psychological issues, or problems with anxiety or depression. Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in one’s life such as a marital discord or work transition. Many seek the advice of counsel as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a therapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges. Therapy can help address many types of issues including depression, anxiety, conflict, grief, stress management, body-image issues, and general life transitions. Therapy is right for anyone who is interested in getting the most out of their life by taking responsibility, creating greater self-awareness, and working towards change in their lives.
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Are you feeling stuck? Feeling more depressed or anxious than your would like? Anxiety can be released. Husbands and wives can love and serve each other again. Survivors can find healing to live in the present. Both anger and sadness can be tamed and used to strengthen relationships rather than tear them apart. Therapy is about HOPE and HEALING!
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. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they might benifit from a helping hand, and that is something to be admired and respected. 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.
How can therapy help me?
Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving and understanding your relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communications and listening skills
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones that are more inline with you value system
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
The goal of therapy is to produce lasting change in relationships, individual behaviors and unwanted emotions. A number of benefits are available from participating in psychotherapy. My responsibility is to listen, select, sort, support, make observations, increase problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution, enabling you to understand and see yourself more clearly. The goal of this process is reorganizing your thinking, feeling and behaviors in a manner that is more satisfying to you. The benefits you obtain from therapy depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn.
What is therapy like?
Every therapy session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for therapists to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during therapy sessions. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts around fifty minutes. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. It is important to process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For therapy to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions.
Here are some things you can expect out of therapy at Footnotes:
- Compassion, respect and understanding
- Reverancy for, and commitment to, healthy family and marital relationships
- Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
- Real strategies for enacting positive change
- Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
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.
Do we accept insurance? How does insurance work?
At this time Footnotes does not accept direct insurance payments. There are several reasons for this.
- Additional Layers of Confidentiality! Unless court ordered NO ONE will see your records without your written consent. This is not possible when utilizing insurance.
- The main reason is that I do NOT feel that it is helpful to the majority of my clients. We have freedom to do what works, instead of what is approved.
- Faith based counseling is covered.
- HSA and FLEX Dollars still work! This is a great option for High Deductible Plans.
- It CAN BE affordable! Sessions are not more (or much more) than Life Coaches, but have much higher training and license.
- I have witnessed too many times, people in need of help and they may have symptoms of a mental illness (and it is a borderline call). What I know is that being labeled (diagnosed) for the purpose of payment is wrong. As a counselor I am faced with an ethical decision. Do they fit into the cookie cutter mold of this diagnosis, and more importantly to me, is it helpful to my client for me to diagnose them?
- Especially in working with couples, I find that most often, it is not helpful to give one member of the couple the diagnosis for the simple purpose of treatment.
- That is not to say that some day I will not reconsider using third party payers, if there is enough need and push from clients.
- The receipt that I give you does have all of the information on it that would allow a client to file with their own insurance company. At this time it is likely that, at best, insurance would cover the cost to go against the co-pay.
- I strongly believe that therapy is more about personal growth and becoming unstuck than it is about pathology.
- The majority of mental health illness, like any “sickness” will come and go with life transitions and stress. (Of course there are exceptions to this).
- I am licensed to diagnose mental illness and will do so when it is helpful to my clients; for some it is a normalizing experience.
- I do offer prepayment discounts and packages to anyone and a sliding fee scale for those that qualify.
Footnotes: Family Counseling Services has developed a menu of services that allow for a variety of price options for clients. I hope that you contact me if there are further questions about this, as it is a different and innovative way of thinking about counseling.
Is therapy confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependent 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. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure his or her safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.
- During professional supervision and collaboration with other competent and confidentially bound mental health professional. The contents of your case may be talked about, but your identity will be kept strictly confidential.