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Green Hills with Blue Sky

Common Questions

"I knew my success would depend on my ability to be honest with myself, and I needed a comfortable, safe environment to accommodate that process. Working with Emily gave me that.  She also armed me with knowledge and tools to address and work through it all.  I have achieved a positive level of understanding and compassion for myself and others, and I am empowered and optimistic about my past, present and future.  Thank you Emily!"  - CC 

How can therapy help me?

 
A number of benefits are available from participating in therapy. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists 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. While you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties, there are times when extra support is beneficial. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, which is admirable. By accepting where you are in life, you are taking responsibility, and making a commitment to change through therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, gives you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-directs damaging patterns, and helps you to overcome 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, addictions, relationship problems, spiritual conflicts and creative blocks.  Therapy can help provide some much needed encouragement and help with skills to get them through these periods.  Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life.   In short, people seeking psychotherapy are ready to meet the challenges in their lives, and ready to make changes for the better. 
 
  
What is therapy like?
 
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual.  In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, 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 with your therapist (usually weekly).

O
ur sense of who we are and how we understand the world is formed in and by relationships with others.  These relationships can be a source of great joy as well as a place of intense pain.  Part of our work may be to examine circumstances and patterns that inhibit you from enjoying the utmost satisfaction in your current relationships.  
 
It is important to understand that you will get more results from therapy if you actively participate in the process.  The ultimate purpose of therapy is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life.  Therefore, beyond the work you do in therapy sessions, your therapist may suggest some things 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, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives.   
 
 
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, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our 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 many cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. 

 
What is Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)?

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based treatment that focuses on behavioral change in areas of interpersonal effectiveness, distress tolerance, 
mindfulness, and self-soothing. The skills learned in DBT effectively reduce personal suffering and allow clients to be aware and proactive, versus reactive, with emotions and behavior. This treatment is suitable for a wide variety of clients, who may suffer with anxiety, depression, PTSD, and many other mental health symptoms. DBT is a treatment best taught in a group class setting, which is augmented and supported with individual therapy. Please inquire for more information.

 
Do you take insurance, and how does that work?

Please see the details about insurance on the "Rates & Insurance" page of this website.
 
 
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 the therapist's office.   Every therapist should provide a written copy of their confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent.” Sometimes, however, you may want your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney), but by law your therapist cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.
 
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
 
* 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 threated to harm another person.
 

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