Why do people go to therapy and how do I know if it is right for me?
To read more about psychotherapy treatment, see:
How does psychotherapy work?
Psychotherapy is not easily described. It varies widely depending on the personalities of clinician and client, as well as on the particular concerns and goals you bring forward. Psychotherapy differs from a medical visit; neither is it like the support you might expect to receive from conversations with a friend. Psychological treatment is an interactive, mutual process, and it calls for active effort on your part as well as mine. In order for the therapy to be most successful, you will work on things we talk about both during and outside our sessions.
Change rarely occurs in a simple, linear fashion; there will be ongoing fluctuations in the process of psychotherapy. Since psychotherapy often involves discussing unpleasant aspects of your life, you may experience uncomfortable feelings such as sadness, guilt, frustration, loneliness, helplessness, and anger. It is my job to respect these vulnerable feelings, and help you to manage, understand, and use them to work through the concerns that brought you in.
Many people come to look forward to their sessions, and find considerable relief and hope in the opportunities for personal insight they provide. Psychotherapy can lead to better relationships, solutions to specific problems, and significant reduction in distress. But, like any interpersonal endeavor, there can be no guarantees of what you will experience.
When we begin psychotherapy, the first two sessions generally involve an assessment of your needs. During this time, we both decide if I am the best person to provide the services necessary to meet your goals. By the end of the intake assessment, I will be able to offer you some first impressions of what our work together might include. You should evaluate this information, along with your own impressions of whether you feel comfortable working with me. Psychotherapy involves a large commitment of time, energy, and often money. You should take care about the therapist you select. If you have any questions about my procedures, we should discuss them whenever they arise. If doubts persist, I am always happy to help you set up a meeting with another mental health professional for consultation or a second opinion.
- 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
- What are my mental health benefits?
- What do I need to pay for each therapy session?
- How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
- Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders must be reported to Child Protection and/or law enforcement authorities.
- It is also mandatory for psychologists to report any reason to suspect a client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threatened to harm another person.
Are you qualified to provide therapy?
I am a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the State of Illinois and earned both Doctoral and Masters degrees in Clinical Psychology. I have obtained a breadth and depth of clinical experience and continue to seek opportunities for ongoing education and clinical growth.