Can therapy help me?
I think that therapy can help everyone. Having a safe neutral space to explore yourself can help anyone.
What will we discuss in therapy?
We will discuss you and your life. Sometimes people show up with a plan to discuss something specific, like a relationship or an event that happened in their life. Other times, when one is working on wellness, we will discuss a broader range of topics. Usually, in the first session, I like to cover a variety of areas to help narrow down what you want to focus on.
Will you give me advice?
Probably not. That’s not what therapy really is about, despite pop culture display. I will help reflect what you are thinking and feeling and I will offer challenges and observation. When appropriate I will share relevant research.
Will you prescribe medication?
Nope. I am not a medical professional. I will provide referrals to local professionals that are able to complete medical/psychiatric assessments and provide medication.
What is therapy like?
It can be uncomfortable and awkward at first but it usually transforms into a place of comfort. Some insights come easily and some are harder to see. Everyone progresses differently in their therapy journey.
How long does therapy take?
This varies per person and if depends on what you are wanting to accomplish. I have some clients that I meet with for months, and then transition to an as needed therapy relationship. Other clients I will see consistently for years. The length of therapy depends on client goals, finances/insurance, availability, and needs of the client.
I recommend that new clients plan to come in once a week for at least three weeks in a row. This way we establish rapport and gain some momentum on exploring what you are working on. After the third session, I usually check in to determine what schedule works best. I routinely check in with all clients to assess whether the sessions are helpful and effective. It’s a healthy practice to have that conversation regularly.
How do I know if therapy is right for me?
You try it. If it doesn’t feel right, maybe try a different therapist. As long as your open to the process, it is likely to help you.
Why do people go to therapy?
I could list many, many reasons, but I’ll opt for a broader response. People go to therapy to live healthier more purposeful lives.
I don’t feel like I have a major problem. Can I still benefit from therapy?
Certainly. Therapy isn’t just for individuals who have major trauma or acute instability. Therapy is for anyone who wants a space to themselves to work on increasing wellness and have some reflection. And really, having a space to focus on you, and only you, can feel amazing.
How can I tell if a therapist is a good match for me?
Take time reading their website or even ask for a phone consult. When looking at profiles, notice what is standing out to you. What is making you feel more inclined towards certain therapists? I’m a big advocate of finding the right therapist as opposed to the right therapy.
One place to start is to think about who you are and what you need. There are many specialties in therapy and while most therapists and see a variety of clients, you may want someone with a special niche. I specialize in Maternal Mental Health and Adventure Therapy. I also have a significant background in substance abuse. Other specialties can include sex therapy, trauma therapy, eating disorder therapist, and gender-specific therapy.
What is the difference between a therapist, psychologist, and a psychiatrist?
Therapist: This is a Master’s level clinician who usually conducts talk therapy. Will spend 45-90 minutes with you helping you process your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
Psychologist: This is a Doctorate level clinician who will either conduct talk therapy or do testing and assessing.
Psychiatrist: A medical doctor who usually prescribes medication.
Will my insurance cover our sessions? How does that work?
It depends on what insurance you have. I currently accept Cigna insurance. If you have Cigna, I will collect your account information when we schedule the first session. That way I can verify benefits prior to our first session. It is my goal to always let you know, prior to our session, what your out of pocket expense will be. If you have met your deductible, then you may only be required to pay the co-pay or co-insurance. If you have not met your deductible, then you would be required to pay the Cigna contracted rate until your deductible is met. For other insurances, I am not able to bill but I can provide a Superbill. A Superbill is pretty much a detailed receipt that can be emailed to you after every session. You can this submit this to your insurance company. If you have met your out-of-network deductible, you can submit the superbill for reimbursement. If you have not met your out-of-network deductible, the amount you paid for the session will then be applied to the out of network deductible balance.
I want to be sure to mention a few things about using insurance, whether in-network or out-of-network. Utilizing your insurance benefits means I must provide a diagnosis, which also means that your insurance company can have access to your notes if they want. For that reason, many individuals opt for self-pay in order to maintain privacy. If this is something you are concerned about, we can discuss further.
What is your self-pay rate? How often do I pay? What methods of payment do you accept?
My self-pay rate is $100 per session. Payment is collected at the end of every session. Methods accepted include cash and card. I have the option to keep a card on file in my Electronic Health Record. I can also charge your card through that system after every session.
What if I cannot make it to a session?
Please notify me by email, online portal, or text at least 24 hours in advance. I have limited hours in the practice and many people ask about last minutes sessions. It’s not unusual to book a session last minute so letting me know about not being able to attend ASAP is helpful. There is a $50 fee for cancellations less than 24 hours (but I really hate charging it, so please cancel on time).
How do I schedule my appointments?
This easiest way to schedule an appointment will be through the online portal. You can see availability and schedule directly from your computer or phone. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 561-315-4841. I try to return calls within 24 hours but I am most likely to return calls on days I am in the office, Tuesday, Thursday, and Fridays.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Yes, that is what makes the space safe. The Code of Ethics, as well as HIPAA, protect what you share in our sessions. You are the client so you hold privilege. If you would like any information about our sessions to be shared (psychiatrist, spouse, etc), then you would need to sign a Release of Information.
There are a few exceptions to privilege which include intentions for self-harm or harm to others, current child, elderly, disabled abuse, or a court order (signed by a judge). If you want clarification on either of these exceptions, I can explain further.
Can I decide to see a different therapist?
Certainly. We can usually tell by the third session if it is a good fit. If it isn’t, I will be happy to provide referrals options or simply support you continuing your journey elsewhere.
What if I don’t want to talk about something?
Then you do not have to. You are in charge.
Will there be any written record of what I say? What happens to that record?
Yes, I am required to keep records. I use Simple Practice which is an online HIPAA compliant Electronic Health Record. All of your files will be stored online. When you first schedule an appointment you will be asked to complete an Informed Consent, History and Information, Adventure Therapy Release, and Policy and Procedures. The completion of these documents is the start of your chart. After each session, I will complete a Session Progress Note.
My personal note writing style is brief. If your insurance is paying for your sessions, I may be required to write more in your note as most insurance payments are determined by “medical necessity”.
I will also like to mention that, like any good therapist, there is no record of what you say. Mostly, I document mood, presentation, goal progress, etc. The goal is not to record content about what is shared in session. This help preserves the integrity and protects vulnerable information.
What is your office like?
My office is part of a suite of offices. There are three in total. One of the offices is occupied by a Midwife team and therefore, if you schedule on Tuesdays, you may share a waiting space with their clients. Or minimally, see them on the way out or in. The office has a couch and two chairs. It has a strong feminine energy. I have a small box of toys for clients who need to bring children to session.
Am I able to bring my child to session with me?
I specialize in Maternal Mental Health so many clients have no choice and need to bring their children to session. Babies in arms are welcomed. Toddlers (walking) are allowed. Older children may feel more comfortable waiting in the reception area or one of the other offices (if available).
I do off-site sessions as well. Some parents find it easier to go for walk with the kids (babywearing/stroller) rather than have them in the therapy room.