I’ve never talked to anyone. I’m used to handling things on my own. Aren’t people who go to therapy weak or weird?
Not at all. People who ask for help know when they need it and have the ability to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then. You already have some strengths that you’ve used before, that for whatever reason aren’t working right now. Perhaps this problem feels overwhelming and is making it difficult to access your past strengths. In our work together, I’ll help you identify what those strengths are and how to implement them again in what is happening now.
My child is the one who is struggling. I feel like I have tried everything. What will be different if we come to therapy?
As a parent myself, I can definitely identify with that feeling. I believe there is help in getting an outside, experienced perspective. Most of my professional experience has been in helping adolescents, and I have specifically worked to learn age-appropriate techniques and therapies that can help your child. I also will provide support for you, the parents, and give you advice and strategies for helping the progress and success in therapy last into adulthood.
What’s the difference between talking to you or my best friend or family?
The difference is between someone who can do their best to help and give advice from their experience and someone who has the training and experience to address that same thing professionally. A mental health professional can help you approach your situation in a new way– teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectations, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, therapy is completely confidential. You won’t have to worry about others “knowing your business.” Lastly, therapy helps you make a commitment to work on your challenges, it helps create focus and makes solving problems a priority.
Why shouldn’t I just take medication?
Medication alone cannot solve all issues. Medication may be effective in treating the symptoms, but research has shown that, in most cases, therapy improves results. Our work together is designed to explore the root of the issue, dig deep into your behavior (or your child’s), and teach strategies that can help you accomplish your personal and/or relational goals.
Medication can be effective and is sometimes needed in conjunction with therapy.
How do I get started? How does it work? What do I have to do in sessions?
The first thing is to make email or phone contact with me. We can talk on the phone, and that will probably help you get a sense of whether you feel comfortable coming to a session. Before our appointment, you will need to complete some paperwork, and then we will meet for about an hour to talk about what is going on and to make a plan for progress. Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. I tailor my therapeutic approach to each person’s specific needs. My goal is to make you feel comfortable and create an environment where things can get better.
How long will it take?
Unfortunately, it is not possible to say in a general FAQs page. Everyone’s circumstances are unique to them and the length of therapy depends on motivation, commitment, and the factors that are causing the need to seek therapy in the first place. If therapy is for your teen and they aren’t too happy about coming, it can take a little longer to get started, but after your child sees that things are improving, they should get more motivated to work.