A: For a free initial consultation, just make sure you have privacy and a good internet connection. Optionally, you can prepare any questions you might have for me.
Prior to our first full appointment, you will need to review and complete intake documents I will send you. It’s best if you can get these done a few days in advance, to make sure I have time to read what you wrote before we meet.
For all visits, I recommend the following:
Choose a location where you have privacy. If needed, let others in your household know you cannot be interrupted during our time.
Use a reliable internet connection. If that’s not possible, we may need to do phone-only. This option doesn’t work for couples.
Use a computer or tablet for our video call. For an optimal experience, silence notifications and close out other applications. Keep your phone and headset nearby, silenced. In the event the video call is choppy, we can mute the video and use the phone separately for a more stable audio connection. That way, we can at least hear each other consistently, even if the video breaks up. If your only device is a phone, you can do telehealth via the app.
Have on hand: pen and paper; water or tea; tissues; and anything else that might help you feel comfortable and prepared.
It’s also optimal if you have taken care of yourself that day: showered, dressed, eaten, and moved your body. When possible, schedule a bit of time for yourself to transition before and after appointments.
A: Yes. When my practice is open, I offer a 15 minute free initial consultation through my secure video platform. You will need to be in a private place with a strong internet connection, and all parties involved in therapy will need to be present. Inquire about my current availability.
A: Individual sessions are 55 minutes, unless otherwise agreed upon. For individual therapy, I prefer to start off weekly in order to build a therapeutic relationship and address your immediate needs, then taper down to biweekly as you start to feel better. When you have met your goals, will plan a closing session or two to wrap up our work together.
The course of therapy typically lasts for several months. In some cases, I will work with a client for years. However, as I view it, the goal of therapy is not to remain in therapy forever, but to help you effectively work through the situations, thoughts, and feelings that brought you to therapy in the first place; develop new coping tools; and form healthy relationships that meet your social needs.
Couples sessions are 75 minutes. I prefer to meet with couples biweekly in order to give time to integrate between sessions and do any homework exercises that are just between the two of you, whether that be having a date night, practicing somatic exercises, or answering some questions together. When a couple is ready to do the work and is a good fit for my style, we can typically accomplish your goals within 5 to 10 sessions.
A: This is outside of my scope of practice.
A: I do not accept new clients who are looking specifically for this service. I can write these letters for current clients who find themselves in a situation where such a letter is needed, as long as I am aware of reasons why keeping a pet is essential to their mental health needs.
A: Yes, unless you are paying out of pocket. Contrary to popular opinion, if you are using health insurance for therapy, you are consenting to receive a mental health diagnosis. This is part of the medical model of mental health, and the only reason that mental health care is covered under the Affordable Care Act. Receiving a diagnosis is not as scary as it sounds, and I am not here to judge you or contribute to stigma around mental health diagnosis. However, it is important for us to have an accurate understanding of your "presenting problem" and how it corresponds to any symptoms you may be having of an adjustment disorder; general or social anxiety; episodic or persistent depression; bipolar; PTSD; ADHD; or other diagnosable conditions. In the first visit I will assess your symptoms based on the information you share in your intake forms and what you tell me. I will assign a diagnosis that we then bill your insurance for. In the second visit, I'll ask you some questions to clarify your goals and what we can do in therapy to address what has brought you here.
A: I need to hear directly from the person who wants therapy.
A: Absolutely not! First of all, I do not prescribe, so if you are interested in medication, I will refer you to your doctor or a specialist. Second of all, I have no interest in dictating what others do, nor do I have the legal or ethical right to force any kind of treatment on anyone. What I can do is help you understand your options and explore your thought process. I can also help you identify non-medical interventions to address your mood and anxiety, such as therapy homework exercises and lifestyle interventions. That being said, if I observe that you have a condition that is severe or persistent enough that I really think you would benefit from talking to a prescriber, I will tell you so.
A: Current or returning clients who have experienced a change in financial status or insurance may qualify for a discounted rate. I do not offer a sliding scale for new clients.
A: If I am in-network with your insurance, your copay with me will be the same as it is with any other in-network therapist, according to your plan. I suggest looking at your insurance benefits documents or contacting your insurance directly. I can also have my insurance biller, Holly Pool, look into your benefits and answer any questions you may have if you decide to work with me.
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