People enter therapy for many reasons but the most common one I hear is people wanting to have an emotional outlet to navigate life stressors. Common mental health symptoms people experience include: chronic sadness, constant worry, feeling exhausted, intense anger/fear/shame, and feelings of inferiority. Like a primary care doctor, it is important to have a space to work on any mental health needs you have.
Some of the things former clients have said they appreciate about my style is that I'm genuine, goofy, and "down to Earth." Just because we talk about difficult or scary subjects doesn't mean we can't have fun while doing it. I'm a real person dealing with the life stressors just like you are. A coworker once described my aesthetic as "the therapist in the tie, blazer, and worn-out Chucks."
I totally get it and I've been in your shoes. Therapy can be very emotionally challenging and requires time and vulnerability. The philosophy behind the initial consultation session is to give you a chance to try out the therapy and see if it is something you might find helpful. While you are strongly encouraged to lean in to difficult emotions, you are understood if you need to step back.
The cool thing about therapy is that no topic is off-limits. Therapy is a sacred space where you can talk about whatever is on your mind without fear of judgement and with confidence that the information will not be shared with others. Whether it be trauma, family/work stress, suicidal thoughts, your childhood, sexual issues - Whatever door you want to open, I will walk through with you.
A first therapy session is a lot like a first date - there doesn't have to be a second one if you don't want there to be. Therapeutic fit is as important as finding the right doctor or attorney to meet your specific needs. If you meet with me and would prefer someone else, I won't take it personally - my priority above everything else is helping people get linked the mental health supports they need.
Here's what an overwhelming majority of my teenage clients say when their caregivers asks this question - "Absolutely not!" My philosophy is that all people - regardless of their age - have a right to confidentiality and a safe space to discuss any matter privately and without fear that their information will be shared. Therapy is actually more beneficial to your child this way as well. Rest assured, limits of confidentiality will be discussed at the initial session.
That's your decision. I have worked with people for as short as one session to spending multiple years in treatment. Some people choose to enter and come back as needed. Everyone's therapy needs are different. After we meet and I learn a little bit about your goals and get a sense of how I can best help you achieve them, I will be able to give you as much more accurate timeline for what to expect in treatment.
The base-rate I charge for an hour-long therapy session is $130/hour. This rate entitles you to your scheduled appointment, as well as consultation as needed throughout the week. Although I do not accept insurance, as a healthcare provider I am able to write "superbills" that you can use to possibly be reimbursed by your insurance provider. If you believe you are financially in-need of assistance, we can discuss sliding scale fees, payment plan schedules, and other creative options to make therapy services more affordable.