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Common Questions
How can therapy help me?
 
A multitude 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 contact interruptions with self and environment. Many people also find that a licensed therapist 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 on my own.  
  
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it and learning to ask for help. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers which feed reactivity, re-direct damaging, destructive patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face with a sense of clarity and confidence. 


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 in their lives. 
 
 

Please explain how you work.

My work is integrative, present centered, intuitive, and compassionate, yet also direct and to the point, when useful. Together, we will create a space for you to achieve your goals, whether that be healing and transformation of old wounds or a newfound awareness of the changes you would like to achieve in your life.  At the very least, you will gain an expanded skill-set that will assist you in living the life you want to be living and experiencing congruency of action and vitality of being.
 
I recommend, that if you are interviewing several practitioners, it might be best to schedule a session with several therapists, as if "interviewing live" (after doing the screening from initial phone interviews). It is important that you trust this person and that you feel safe in their presence and that you believe this person can be helpful and constructive in facilitating positive change and forward movement. In the case of couples and families, where more than one person needs to "connect", it is important that all parties present have a good experience and "like" the therapist, believing them to be able to be helpful, feeling understood and received without judgment. Working "live" allows each person to have a personal experience.

 
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 and awareness gained) from the application of the previous therapy sessions.  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 - for couples, every other week).
 
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 in their lives, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives.   

What modalities are you actually integrating when you do psychotherapy?

I integrate Systems Theory, Gestalt Theory, Cognitive/Behavioral, Developmental/Behavioral and Intuitive/Energetic modalities. I  believe in understanding the beliefs held in the mind that one lives and acts by, often without conscious awareness as well as the importance of understanding one's emotions and body-intelligence.  It is essential to be connected and aware of the truth of one's whole self. This awareness can inform one's actions in the world and in the surrounding relationships of life. I value integration of the self, meaning that all dimensions of the self, however multi-layered, once fully owned, can lead to a satisfying, creative and enlivening life.
 
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.  We will work together to create a treatment plan for you, and, if necessary,  we will work with a referring psychiatrist to help you determine what's best for you.  In some cases, a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action for a particular period of time.  We will discuss this in person, and if necessary we will make the decision together that is right for you. 
 
Do you take insurance, and how does that work?

No. As an "Out-of-Network Provider", I don’t get involved in any insurance issues and don’t provide paperwork (TRF forms) or Clinical Assessments by phone with insurance carriers. You will receive a "Superbill" with all the information that an insurance company generally requires. You, the client, are then responsible to submit the Superbill along with your insurance form directly to your carrier for reimbursement to you. My office does not accept insurance payments directly. The Superbill, along with your claim form, is sufficient for reimbursement as an Out-of-Network Provider. If you choose not to use your insurance carrier for reimbursement, you can also use my Superbill as proof of payment for medical expenses. I am licensed in the State of New Jersey as a Marriage and Family Therapist.

Payment is expected in the form of cash or check at the end of the session. You will receive whatever percentage of reimbursement your insurance company provides, after services are complete and you have submitted the necessary paperwork to your insurance company. Many clients are reimbursed from 80% to 50%. However, you need to do the initial work to find out what percentage your insurance carrier will reimburse if this is important to you.

 
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.  Sometimes, however, you may want me as your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney), but by law I cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission through an "Informed Consent" form.
 
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except under the following circumstances:  
 
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders, 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.
 
In either of these circumstances, I am required to notify the appropriate authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement.