Below are some answers to some questions that you may have as you consider contacting me:
How can therapy help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in mental health therapy. A clinical psychologist can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood conflicts, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that a psychologist can offer invaluable assistance in managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. An individual psychotherapist
and relationship psychologist
can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution.The benefits you obtain from therapy depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek 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 solve problems in your family or marriage
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life; and while you may have successfully navigated through many difficulties you've faced, there is nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, psychotherapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. Psychotherapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, gives you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-directs damaging patterns, and helps you to better manage whatever challenges you face.
Why do people go to therapy and how do I know if it is right for me?
People have many different motivations for coming to psychotherapy. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, relationship problems, personal conflicts, and creative blocks. Therapy can help provide much needed encouragement and practical skills to get through these periods. Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective in achieving their goals in life. In short, people seeking psychotherapy are ready to meet challenges and ready to make changes in their lives. I am here to connect with such people in and around Indianapolis.
What is therapy like?
Because each person has different issues and goals for psychotherapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, the personal history relevant to your issues, and report progress or any new insights gained from the previous therapy session. Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions, usually weekly.
It is important to understand that you will get more results from psychotherapy if you actively participate in the process. The ultimate purpose of therapy is to help you transfer what you learn in your sessions back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in the actual therapy sessions, some things may be suggested that you can do outside of therapy to support your process - such as reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviors or taking action on your goals. People seeking psychotherapy are ready to make positive changes in their lives, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives. I much enjoy the company of such people.
What about medication vs. psychotherapy?
It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, psychotherapy addresses the cause of the distress and the behavior patterns that can curb progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you, and in some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action.
Do you take insurance, and how does that work?
To determine if you have mental health coverage through your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is call them. Check your coverage carefully and make sure you understand their answers. Some helpful questions you can ask them:
- What are my mental health benefits?
- What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
- How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
- How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and psychotherapist. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is usually not discussed anywhere but in the therapist's office. You can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone other than your authorized insurance personnel and without your written permission, which is called “Informed Consent”. If you should want specific information or just an update to be given to someone on your healthcare team (i.e., your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney), there will be a form provided for your written permission.
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations, as well as some others described on the HIPPA form included on the Helpful Forms page:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threatened to harm another person.