Frequently Asked Questions
How much do your services cost?
My standard fee is $115 per hour. I do reserve a few slots in my schedule for college students at a lower fee.
How do I pay?
You may pay by check, cash or credit card (credit card comes with a $3 charge). Payment is expected at the beginning or end of each session. If you cancel a session without providing 24 hours notice, I reserve the right to charge you for that session. If your late-cancelled session is rescheduled and takes place in the same week, there will be no cancellation charge.
In order for therapy to “work”, you will need to be an active participant, both in the office and outside. I work to create a safe place for you to be honest with yourself and me, but I do not do magic. The harder work is what you will do with the remaining hours of your week. If, in your daily life, you use the truths we uncover and the lessons you learn, if you are motivated and committed to change, then change will occur. Being open to new perspectives and taking responsibility for your life will result in new feelings and thoughts and behavior. Change in you will create change in all around you.
Do you accept insurance, Medicare or MediCal?
No, but I can give you a receipt that includes both diagnosis and procedures codes which you then submit to your insurer for reimbursement. Any reimbursement is handled between you and your insurance company.
How often do I need to come in?
It is most effective for clients to attend at least one session per week. A client who is struggling may need to come in more often, and clients who are almost finished may want to take two or more weeks between sessions to practice what they have learned. The more consistently you attend, the more progress you will experience.
How long will therapy take?
This is like asking, “How long will it take me to drive to my destination?” The answer to both questions is, “It depends.” A trip to the grocery store will take you a short time; a cross-country trek will take much longer. In the same way, if your therapeutic goals are short-range, such as working up the courage to ask your employer for a raise at your next review, then you’ll spend a shorter amount of time. If your goal is to heal deep wounds that occurred many years ago, or to repair a relationship that’s long been broken, your time in therapy will be longer.
Therapy can be a lifelong process, one which some individuals consider an essential part of their commitment to continuing health and growth.
With all that being said, EMDR is an approach to therapy that generally aids the client in reaching his or her goals in less time than traditional talk therapy. You can read more about EMDR here.
Why should I do therapy?
There are many reasons to commit to therapy (or counseling, whichever word is easier for you). Here are some of the ones you already know:
- A current relationship that is painful
- An ongoing argument in your marriage
- A child who is out of control
- The experience of trauma that you can’t seem to shake
- Coping with life’s difficulties by using alcohol or drugs or sex or shopping or gambling or….
- Grief over the loss of a loved one or a treasured relationship
- Depression that pins you down
- Anxiety that keeps you awake at night
But those aren’t the only reasons to seek the help of a counselor! Here are some others:
- One hour a week to focus just on yourself; to identify the strong places and strengthen the weak ones
- Make a good marriage a great marriage
- Become an awesome parent whose children flourish
- Learn to forgive and let go of past resentments
- Stop striving and begin thriving
It is admirable that you seek support to grow and heal, to accomplish a life goal, to mend a relationship. Taking responsibility for where you are and making a commitment to change is a good thing. Therapy can provide long-lasting benefits for you.
What can I expect and how does it work?
Your first session will be a consultation to determine whether now is the time, and whether I am the therapist, to begin the work you are considering.
Once you have made the decision to continue, we will talk more about your concerns and struggles, along with your hopes and goals. We will explore your thoughts, feelings and behaviors in order to guide you toward healthier relationships, better communication and behavior change.
- We will talk about your past, because what happened in your past helped create the person you are today.
- We will talk about the present, about the things you do well and the places where you struggle.
- We will talk about the future, about who you want to be as you live the life ahead of you.
You may experience strong emotions during therapy. You might feel very sad and cry, or you might feel angry over hurtful things done to you. This is completely normal and expected, not something to be fearful of or avoid.
In order for therapy to “work”, you will need to be an active participant, both in the office and outside. I work to create a safe place for you to be honest with yourself and me, but I do no magic. The harder work is what you will do with the remaining hours of your week. If, in your daily life, you use the truths we uncover and the lessons you learn, if you are motivated and committed to change, then change will occur. Being open to new perspectives and taking responsibility for your life will result in new feelings and thoughts and behavior. Change in you will create change in all around you.