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How can therapy help me?
Therapy services can provide a variety of benefits to any individual. If you think about it, no individual is perfect; there is always something that we can do to improve ourselves and the way we cope with the world. Individuals have very different reasons for seeking therapy services. Some individuals seek outpatient therapy when they are going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.) or they are struggling to manage a stressful situation occurring in their life. Some individuals begin the therapeutic process to obtain assistance managing a range of other issues, such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship difficulties, or internal conflicts. Outpatient therapy can help provide you with the support and encouragement you need to work through these difficult times. Other individuals seek therapy to learn more about themselves and work more effectively toward their life goals.
Therapy provides individuals with the non-judgmental and compassionate support most of us need when we are struggling with daily stressors or more difficult transitions and difficulties. Therapists can provide support and structure, and help develop positive problem-solving skills and coping strategies to manage concerns including depression, anxiety, relation difficulties, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, and body image concerns. Therapists are very helpful when working with individuals collaboratively to enhance their personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family dynamics, and the stress of daily life. Most individuals find it beneficial to have someone with a fresh, objective, and compassionate perspective on difficult problems. The benefits of therapy depend largely on participation and collaboration with the therapist during sessions, and putting learned skills into practice between sessions. Benefits of therapy include, but are not limited to:
- Attaining a better understanding of oneself, and one's goals and values
- Developing skills for improving relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led to seeking therapy
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communications and listening skills
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
- Discovering new ways to address family or marriage problems
- Improving self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
What if I'm interested in getting medication?
We are trained and licensed to practice psychology and outpatient therapy services, we are not able to provide psychiatry and medicine services. However, if there is a need to be evaluated for medication, we will be happy to consult with physicians that are able to provide medication services in an effort to have you evaluated and set up for medication management services.
What happens if you see your therapist in public?
It’s a pretty small world out there, sometimes you might see your therapist while you’re outside of the office. In order to protect and respect your confidentiality, your therapist will not acknowledge you, unless you acknowledge him or her first. We do not want you to feel uncomfortable in any way, or feel that you need to explain how you know us, so we will continue along our way, without bringing attention to the fact that you know us. If you do choose to acknowledge your therapist, it should only be by a nod or a brief greeting, due to the nature of the relationship, it is not appropriate to maintain a conversation while outside of the office setting.
Is what I share in therapy confidential?
Everything discussed in therapy is confidential, it is protected information by state law, as well as the rules of our profession. All information regarding our clients is kept confidential, information is only released outside of the office with your permission, and regarding your treatment needs. Your privacy is important to us, we make our best efforts to insure that you are aware of when and how your information is utilized.
However, there are some exceptions, required by law to this rule, these exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse; therapists are required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another individual, the therapist is required to notify the police.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure his or her safety; however, if the therapist is unable to ensure safety, and feels the individual continues to be at risk, additional measures may need to be taken.
- If a court order is issued, the therapist is required to provide documentation in line with the court order.
Will you tell me what my child says in therapy?
When working with children and adolescents, it can be difficult at for the individual to feel comfortable opening up to the therapist. It is important that the client feels that their privacy will be protected and respected, despite their parent being a part of the therapeutic process. If there are any concerning developments that arise throughout therapy sessions, the therapist will discuss the concerns with parents; however, the child will be made aware of this conversation and the therapist will process the reasoning and importance of sharing the information with his or her parent prior to exploring it with the parent. In the mental health field, an individual is considered to be an adult, able to make decisions regarding their mental health treatment, for themselves, once they reach the age of 14. If your child is over the age of 14, he or she has the same confidentiality and privacy considerations as an adult would have. In this case, information can not be shared with his or her parent unless permission is given, unless the therapist feels as though the client is at risk of hurting himself/herself or someone else.
I heard that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy includes homework?
Therapy is a collaborative process to work toward your goals, but change is not possible if it is only focused on during one session per week, or every other week. In order for you to make the changes and progress that you would like to see, you need to transition what is learned and explored in therapy to your everyday life. Between sessions, you may be asked to practice a skill discussed, or track your moods and/or thoughts; the “homework” assignments are tasks that will help to build upon what is done in sessions with your therapist, as well as transitioning your growth and knowledge into your daily life. By practicing and focusing on these skills between sessions, you will see more growth and progress.