How can therapy help me?
Therapy is used to obtain support, additional coping strategies to those you have, and added perspectives leading to new solutions. Therapy is not a magic pill. It requires your participation inside and outside the therapy session, using strengths you may not have known existed in your past. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values, as well as that of others in your life
Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
Managing and accepting feelings like anger, grief, anxiety and depression
Improving communication and listening skills
Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
How can a therapist help me if s/he hasn't experienced what is going on for me?
My role as an LMFT is not to judge you, nor is it to have the same experiences. My role is to work within your value system rather than my own, to help you find peace of mind, and to uncover your strengths and skills that lead to a positive life experience.
Why do people go to therapy?
People have many different reasons for seeking therapy. Some are going through a life transition or new phase (developmental stage changes, unemployment, divorce, new job, new family dynamic, etc.). Others may need assistance managing 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.
What is therapy like?
Therapists have differnt styles, just as people have different personalities. A therapy session may involve discussion of the past, present or future depending on the therapist's modality and/or the client's preference. Therapy allows you to explore aspects of yourself that you may not have known existed, which may invite positive changes. The therapy space should be one in which you feel safe and private. Having a good connection and rapport with your therapist is important to the feeling of safety, which leads to greater success.
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. If you believe that a combination of medication and therapy is better for you, you may wish to contact your medical professionals to discuss this with them.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Nearly always! 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. Every therapist should provide a written copy of their confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent.” Sometimes, however, you may want your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney), but by law your therapist cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.
That said, state law and professional ethics require exceptions for the following situations, in which therapists must pass along information without client permission:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including CPS, APS and law enforcement, 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 threated to harm another person.
Why such a stringent cancellation policy?
With some therapists (and certainly with Denise Hie) clients are offered the opportunity to have regular, consistent appointments, having one's own time/day slot on which one can depend. When clients cancel or "no-show," they take away the opportunity for other clients to receive treatments during that time. And sometimes other clients are waiting for an opening. It also takes away from the therapist's anticipated schedule, when other matters or business could be conducted. More importantly, it takes away from the client. And when one cancels often, the client's personal commitment to growth becomes less valued.
With Denise Hie, a person can decide for one's self, how often to attend sessions. Options include 1 sesson per week or 2 sessions per month. On certain occasions, twice per week is justifiable as well. In each of these scenarios, one can choose the same day/time slot that is available. If a client would like to titrate down to one session per month, one can arrange single appointments according to availability. A client is also welcome to "as needed" appointments, and can check in as needed, to learn what appointments slots are available at that time. In summary, if one needs to cancel their appointment, reschedules are certainly welcome according to available appointment slots.