Common Questions

How can therapy help me?
Therapy/counseling  does not have to be for an extended time.  Your lives are very busy and many people "just don't have the time".  Some people find that just a few sessions  are helpful.  Sometimes just talking about what's on your mind can make a difference.   A number of benefits are available from participating in therapy. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhance coping strategies for many issues.  These can include depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, stress management and unresolved childhood issues. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the dificulties of daily life. Therapists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. Some of the benefits from therapy include:

Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values

  • Developing skills for improving your relationships
  • Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that lead you to seek therapy
  • Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
  • Improving communications and listening skills
  • Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
  • Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or relationship
  • Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence

Do I really need therapy?  I can usually handle my problems.    
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 need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. Therapy can provide long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome the challenges you are facing.
Why do people go to therapy and how do I know if it is right for me?
People have many different motivations for coming to psychotherapy.  Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well.  Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship problems,or medical issues.  Therapy can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get them through these periods.  Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life.  In short, psychotherapy can help.

What is therapy like?
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual.  In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous therapy session.  Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult issues.  Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions with your therapist .  The freequency of your visits is something you can discuss.  You may not have time for weekly sessions.  
What about medication vs. psychotherapy?  
Medications can be used in conjunction with psychotheapy. Studies have shown that both therapy and medication have the best results.  However, many people would prefer not to take any medicaition. Your therapist will  reepect this and will work with you.  This is your life after all. Keep in mind  that 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 growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. . 
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and psychotherapist. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is usually not discussed anywhere but the therapist's office.  
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threated to harm another person.