I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak?
Thinking through our problems works some of the time, but sometimes we need new information, and other times we find ourselves thinking in familiar circles. Then, too, some problems can’t be solved by thinking, but only by learning new emotional skills. Finally, some things are wounds that need healing. “We are wounded in relationship, and we heal in relationship.” The therapeutic relationship is one of those healing spheres.
Isn’t taking time and money to talk about myself selfish?
We’ve all suffered the experience of trying to relate with people who aren’t aware of their patterns, reactions, or behaviors. The truth is that getting to know ourselves in the deepest and most transparent way possible is the most responsible thing we can do for others.
What’s the difference between talking to you and talking to my best friend or family?
We all have times when we need someone to confide in who has no ‘skin in the game’ – no wish for you to feel a certain way or reach a certain conclusion. Furthermore, counseling is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing my business.” Lastly, we sometimes feel we’ve leaned too much on certain friends or family, or that they just want us to ‘get over’ whatever we’re struggling with. This can work to make us feel locked in place.
Why shouldn’t I just take medication?
Sometimes medication is needed or just helpful in conjunction with counseling. Our work together is designed to build wellness and expand your strengths; for some, this can result in reduced need for medication, over time.
How does it work? What do I have to do in sessions?
I tailor my therapeutic approach to your specific needs. You will tell me what you would like to get out of therapy (“What brings you here”) and we will discuss together the ways to get where you want to be. I will give you feedback and any ‘bigger picture’ information that I am aware of as I listen to you. (“We don’t know what we don’t know.”)
Sessions are usually an hour long; visits might be weekly or biweekly, depending on your needs and goals. Because therapy is not cheap, I skew toward working ‘harder’ in sessions; I want you to leave each session with a sense of new awareness, clarity, insight, hope, or ease. These are made possible through a strong commitment and desire for growth on your part.
You should expect to reflect honestly and talk as candidly as possible about your experience in sessions. Sometimes learning how to do this is the therapy. I will direct your attention to areas that I think will give you the deepest access to your inner experience, and the greatest self-awareness. You can disclose your observations and experiences as you are comfortable.
How long will it take?
This is a highly individual question and not possible to say in a general FAQs page. Some people or couples want a session or two; others may work for months or years, as they, themselves, identify improvements they want. We will continually discuss where you are in your therapy and where you want to go next. You are always in the driver’s seat, as a therapy consumer.