Can therapy help me?
Therapy is effective in dealing with many of the discomforts of life such as couples counseling, anxiety, depression, stress, abuse, addictions, or life-stage issues. It can help a person grow in relationships, gain insights, and improve coping skills. Psychotherapy can often ward off more expensive medical treatments or hospitalization or be used in conjunction with psychiatry and other medical treatments. Effective counseling requires your effort, honesty and openness. I welcome your feedback about your progress. Because of individual differences, it is very helpful for me to know what is working and what is not helpful to your specific goals for counseling.
There are some risks associated with counseling. Symptoms may get worse before they get better. Making changes in interpersonal relationships may be uncomfortable for you or viewed negatively by others who prefer old patterns. Long-standing patterns may not change quickly. It will help us both if you share any concerns you may have about our process together.
How long will I need to be in therapy?
Much depends on your goals and willingness to work towards them. You can end our work together at any time, for any reason. People often stop the counseling relationship for a time and return at a later date. When either of us feel goals are achieved, we talk about where you are now and assess your comfort in leaving. The door is always open to return should the need arise.
What about using my insurance and confidentiality issues?
Carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of using insurance for counseling. Many who have insurance assume that they must use it, but such is not the case. When it comes to mental health, there are some additional facts that you may have not considered. To use insurance for counseling, you must have a diagnosis of a mental health disorder. (If you are seeking couple’s counseling, one of you must have a diagnosis.) This becomes part of your permanent medical record and may affect your premiums on future life and health insurance plans and programs. For this reason, many persons elect to pay out-of-pocket. Self-pay is the only way to insure confidentiality.
Many providers, myself included, elect to not to be on insurance panels. This is because many of my referrals come from past clients, pastors, colleagues and physicians. I believe strongly in confidentiality and a client’s decision to choose the therapist best for his or her particular concern(s).
If your plan provides out-of-network benefits and you want to use insurance, I am an out-of-network provider. This means I work for you and not your insurance provider. Payment is still expected at each session, but I will be happy to provide a diagnostic receipt for you to submit to your provider. You may then receive partial reimbursement for counseling after meeting your insurance deductible. You’ll want to make sure you ask questions of your company and thoroughly understand the provisions of your particular mental health plan. If you are interested in exploring this topic further you may want to read my more in-depth post on using insurance in my blogpost dated May 31, 2012.
How do we get started?
Getting started is easy! Simply tab over to “Starting” at the top of this page. So we have more time to talk at your first visit, you can even print an intake form that can be filled out ahead of time to bring with you. If you have any additional questions, just call me at 314.249.5444, or send me an email through the Contacts page of this website.
What does therapy cost?
My current fee is $150 for a 45-50 minute session of couples or individual counseling. If you are contracting with me for Discernment Counseling, the first session is done at $300 for the double session (couple and individual portion). Subsequent Discernment Counseling sessions are $225 for the 75 minute sessions with a limit of 4. Pre-marital assessment counseling is done in 4 sessions for a total package of $525. A portion of my practice is devoted to providing for clients with financial needs. Unless prior arrangements are made, clients pay by cash, check or charge at the end of each session. You will be asked to put in a credit card number securely in my practice management system. Major credit cards and most health savings account cards are accepted for your convenience.