All clients voluntarily agree to treatment, and accordingly may terminate any time without penalty. Counseling involves a large commitment of time, money, and energy, so you should be thoughtful about the therapist you select. In the first few sessions, your therapist will ask a wide variety of questions designed to get to know you and learn about your personal history. The therapeutic relationship is unique in that you are expected to talk freely and openly about yourself. The therapist’s job is to listen, select, sort, make observations and reflect your feelings so you may see yourself more clearly. In the first couple of sessions, you will decide whether your therapist is right for you. If you feel it is not a good match, your therapist will be happy to assist you in finding a different therapist.
All clients are expected to arrive to appointments on time, prepared to focus and discuss therapy goals and issues, and not to be under the influence of mood altering chemicals. All clients are expected to be open and honest so your therapist can assist you with your goals. Counseling is not like a medical doctor visit. Instead, it calls for very active effort on your part. In order for your therapist to be most successful, you are encouraged to work on things discussed both during sessions and at home. Inconsistent attendance can negatively impact your therapy progress. Violence (physical or verbal) is never acceptable. Your therapist reserves the right to discontinue a session at any time and call the proper authorities, if necessary. Recording during sessions by any method is strictly forbidden.
An important aspect of the therapeutic process is the relationship that develops between the client and therapist. As with any new relationship, it may take time to trust and feel safe enough to share freely. If the relationship does not develop after a reasonable amount of time (3-4 sessions), at your request, the therapist would be happy to offer referrals to a few providers that may be a better fit for you. If you were to encounter your therapist in any public place outside of therapy, your therapist will be careful not to acknowledge you or the relationship or engage in any conversation in order to protect your privacy and confidentiality. Exceptions to this would require the written permission for a very specific purpose discussed in advance, or in an emergency situation which may determine that confidentiality must be broken within the limits of the law to protect your personal safety, the possibility of you harming others, or to receive appropriate psychiatric care.
The therapeutic relationship is a professional relationship and as such, social or business relationships should be avoided. Your therapist cannot compromise the integrity of the therapeutic relationship in any way that would impair objectivity, clinical judgment, or the therapeutic effectiveness of treatment. In order to protect our therapeutic relationship, psychotherapy does not include physical contact. This means that we do not ordinarily touch one another as any part of therapy. Your therapist will limit contact to an occasional greeting, such as a handshake.
Psychotherapy sessions are generally scheduled once per week or as needed and may be adjusted to meet your current issues and treatment goals. Session length is typically 45 – 60 minutes, depending on insurance coverage. Please report any changes in your condition or behavior to your therapist throughout the course of therapy, as this may alter the scheduling of therapy sessions. If you feel the need to increase or decrease the frequency of sessions or to end counseling, please feel free to discuss this with your therapist at any time. On average, many people feel that they have obtained what they are looking for in 10-25 sessions.
General business hours are Monday-Thursday, from 8am – 8pm and on Friday and Saturday from 8am - 4pm, with available appointments scheduled throughout the day. Your therapist will utilize a secure voice and text message service to receive incoming calls and texts. Messages are checked throughout the day and will be returned as time permits. Calls during the evening or weekends will generally be returned the following business day. As a sole practitioner, your therapist may occasionally need to re-schedule your appointment due to an illness, unexpected event, or personal commitment. Every effort will be made to contact you in advance should this occur. Additionally, your therapist may vacation periodically and be unavailable by phone or for messages during that time. A designated therapist will be made available for any clients who require assistance during the vacation period. Please note that weather closings will occur if your therapist believes it would be unsafe for travel to and from our location. Every effort will be made to contact you should the office be closed.
We do not accept friend or contact requests from current or former clients on any social networking site (Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedln, etc.). We believe that adding clients as friends or contacts on these sites can compromise your confidentiality and our respective privacy and blur the boundaries of our therapeutic relationship.
Call 911 first. Our phones are answered during regular business hours; after hours you will be directed to voice mail. Remember if you are calling with an emergency, please hang up, dial 911 or go to the closest hospital emergency room. If it is a non-emergency after business hours and your therapist is unavailable, you may call the following crisis center: United Way 211 (first call for help) at 211 or 954-537-0211.