Frequently Asked Questions
- What is therapy like? I’ve never done this before…
- How should I choose a therapist?
- Do you work with couples?
- What if I have a couples problem and my partner refuses to come?
- Do you work with individuals?
- Do you work with children?
- Are you a Christian counselor?
- Where is the office?
- How is payment handled?
- Can I use my insurance?
- Do you offer a sliding scale?
- Do you have evening and weekend appointments?
- How do I make an appointment?
What is therapy like? I’ve never done this before….
My approach to therapy is a team effort. We work together to identify your goals, strengths, sore spots, joys, obstacles, and opportunities. Then we figure out ways you can build on strengths, move toward your goals, and add joy.
Some people worry that a therapist may “judge” or “analyze” them. My approach is to analyze the process—what’s working for you, where you may be getting stuck, what seems to energize you. I believe that every human being has “issues” to one degree or another; that’s just part of being human. Working together, we can help you reduce habits that are holding you back and build new habits and ways of interacting that will make your life better.
By the way, you won’t have to lie on a couch. My office is sort of like a living room; you can sit on the couch or on a chair.
How should I choose a therapist?
If possible, get a recommendation from a friend, your doctor, or your clergyperson—someone who knows you well. Alternatively, read info like this online and see who feels like a good fit for you.
Listen to your gut the first few times you meet with any therapist. If you don’t feel comfortable fairly quickly, like he/she is truly interested and “gets” you, it’s probably not a good fit. (On the other hand, if you like the therapist at first but after a while he/she starts to irritate you, stay with it—that probably means you’re getting to something uncomfortable but important.)
Do you work with couples?
Yes, often. Couples counseling can be intense. By the time most couples decide to try therapy, they’ve tried a lot of other ways to improve their relationship, and may even be close to giving up. But if both partners are willing to come for therapy, it’s much easier for me to see how you’re getting stuck, and for the three of us together to figure out how to get you unstuck.
What if we have a couples problem and my partner refuses to come?
It’s definitely possible to improve any relationship even if only one person comes to therapy. The process is slower, because I can’t see your interactions and I don’t get to hear your partner’s side of the story, but it can work. I can’t help you change your partner, though: We can figure out things you can do differently that will create a change in the relationship, to make it better for both of you. I’d be happy to talk with you about how this works.
Do you work with individuals?
Yes, I work with individual adults (age 17 and up) on a wide variety of concerns.
Do you work with children?
Not directly—but I do work with parents. If your child is struggling, I will work with you to figure out how best to help him or her. You’re the one who’s around your child every day, the one who already has a strong connection. Lasting improvement is much more likely when it’s built on your close, ongoing relationship with your child, rather than an hour a week with a therapist.
Are you a Christian counselor?
Yes and no. I am a secularly trained therapist who is a lifelong, active Christian (specifically, Episcopalian). I understand the importance faith can have in people’s lives and think it’s important to include your spiritual beliefs and values in the therapy process. I am always glad to invite God into the healing process. If you’d like to know more about my approach, let’s talk.
Where is the office?
My office is in Old Lyme, 2 miles from Exit 70 off I-95.
How is payment handled?
The fee for a 45-minute session is $125, payable each time. Please bring cash or a check (not a credit or debit card).
Can I use my insurance?
Maybe. I am not “in-network” on any insurance plans. Why not? Some insurance plans allow you to use out-of-network providers; others don’t. If you’d like to use your insurance, I suggest you phone them and talk to a real person. Ask about co-pays, reimbursement percentage, and number of sessions allowed, both in-network and out-of-network. If using an out-of-network provider seems do-able for you, let’s talk. You can pay me as we go, and I’ll give you a statement every month or quarter that you can submit for reimbursement.
Do you offer a sliding scale?
Yes, sometimes. Depending on client circumstances, we may negotiate a lower fee. But since I have to pay my bills, I can accept only a limited number of reduced-fee clients at any one time.
Do you have evening and weekend appointments?
I don’t offer weekend hours, but I have a limited number of evening appointment times. As much as possible, I encourage clients to come in during the day (including before work or at lunchtime) to keep those few slots free for people who truly can’t make it work otherwise. Let’s talk about what might work best for both of us.
How do I make an appointment?
Let’s talk. Spending ten minutes on the phone together helps us both assess whether we’re likely to be a good fit. My number is 860-434-1238. I’m looking forward to talking with you!