What hours are you available for appointments?
I am currently in my office Monday through Friday, with appointment times on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday from 10:00 am until my last appointment beginning at 6:30 PM, Thursday and Friday from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm. Saturday and Sunday appointments are scheduled for a full 2 hours from 10:00 until 12:00 noon.
Complete privacy, a flexible schedule, short wait times, online and home based sessions when needed.
During the initial telephone consultation, you and I will discuss, in general, your needs for counseling and then discuss the next step to take. I typically recommend that we schedule our first in person meeting to provide a more in depth picture of your concerns.
In this session I may ask you about:
- Your current situation, how long has it been going on, and what are your efforts to deal with it.
- How have you dealt with stressful situations in the past.
- Your personal support system and history of family, peer, and intimate relationships.
- Your goals for counseling.
When you meet with couples do you meet with both partners together or will you schedule individual sessions as well?
I prefer to see you as a couple together for the first 2-3 sessions, and then depending on the comfort level of the couple and the need, I may recommend seeing the members of the couple individually as well. However, that said, at times I begin by seeing someone individually and then later bring their spouse in for couples counseling sessions. This approach comes from a systems perspective which helps members of a group (a couple, a family, a friend group) attain positive relationships, secure interrelationships, and overall well-being.
How often do we need to schedule appointments and for how long?
For the first 4 to 6 sessions, I recommend once a week sessions, after that time, we can discuss the frequency of sessions. The length of time you are in counseling depends on many factors. Counseling that brings about change requires a commitment of time, effort, and desire for change. I ask the individuals and couples I see to make every effort to commit to the counseling process. Counseling is a collaborative process which I will help you bring to a close when you are ready.
Do you give feedback and direction? What is your style?
Creating a safe place for you to talk and share your inner most concerns is my first priority. One of the ways I help to create a safe, nonjudgmental place to talk is by supporting an active dialogue between the two or three of us. I want to hear what you have to say much more than I want to talk, but I bring something important to the table as part of the discussion in which we work together to find understanding and direction that fits for you as you confront life's challenges. I know where we are going, and I can help direct you through the process in a way that is clear and most importantly, useful. Give me a call! You can do this...we can talk about what would work best for you and your relationship.
How are payments handled and do you accept insurance?
Payment in full is typically made at the time of each session and can be made in cash, check or by credit card. An insurance ready invoice can be provided if you should need one to get your benefits paid directly to you by your insurance company. I would check your out of network benefits for mental health. Couples counseling sessions are self pay; most insurance companies only pay for services they consider medically necessary and come with a mental illness diagnosis. If you have insurance that covers out of network providers you may be eligible to get some of the cost of sessions reimbursed. Also, if you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA) counseling services are typically eligible expenses.
Why don't you accept insurance?
In a world of diminishing privacy, there is now more than ever, a great value in knowing that what is said in the counseling session is completely private and confidential. When you use insurance to pay for therapy, your therapist is required to provide your medical mental illness diagnosis and treatment notes to your insurance company in order to get paid. This undermines the basic premise of therapy and also gives a lot more people access to private health information about you. When therapists take insurance, they are required to use treatment methods that are covered by your plan. This means they have less say in how to treat you based on your specific and individual needs.