Common Questions

Is psychotherapy right for me?

There are many reasons why individuals or families seek therapy services. Sometimes it is to deal with a past trauma or situation in life that we have been avoiding and realize that it is now causing problems in our daily living.  Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in life such as a divorce, work, family, or relationship transition. Many seek the advice of counsel as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth or when they encounter questions and seek guidance as they are raising their children. What ever the reason, working with a therapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges. Therapy is right for someone 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 and relationships.

Is my child appropriate for play therapy?

The brain of a child and adolescent are still developing past their adolescent years. As talkative as children may be, they do not always possess the verbal skills to express their feelings and conflicts. Play therapy is a researched practice that provides children with an opportunity to work through emotional issues by using their natural ability to play.

An initial assessment will be completed with both you and your child to determine the best treatment approach. Play therapy has been researched to be the most effective treatment intervention that aids children in working through issues related to behavioral problems, divorce/loss, death, adhd, adjustments, illness, and abuse,  (Reddy, Files-Hall & Schefer 2005). Play therapy is a specialized field of counseling in which I have received advanced training and regular consultation. Please visit the Association for PlayTherapy  to learn more.

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 also 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. People seeking psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of therapy:

  • Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
  • Learning to tolerate feelings that you may have avoided from past situations
  • Skills to aid in changing patterns in your life and in response to relationships
Do I need to take medications?

In some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor  or a referal to a psychiatrist can determine what's best for you. It is well established that the long-term solution to emotional problems 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.

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, except for the following legal exceptions:

Exceptions include:

  • Suspected child abuse or dependant 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.
  • If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist has the duty to inform a person or proper authority (possibly the hospital) to keep you safe.