I Don’t Know Whether to Do Therapy Alone or with a Family Member?

Again, this is very specific to your situation.  We can talk more about options during our initial call.  Many times people do therapy individually even though they are working on issues that deal with relationships.  Later on throughout treatment, it is would not be uncommon for the client to invite other family members into sessions depending on their goals.

Other people know that they would like to begin sessions with their partner or other family members from the beginning.  In these types of situations, all relevant family members would come to  initial sessions to talk about goals and future plans.

Can I Use My Insurance?

I am able to be reimbursed by several insurance companies, both in and out of network. I can bill BCBS PPO and MESSA as an in-network provider. I can bill several other companies as an out-of-network provider. There are several questions that you can ask your insurance company to find out the specific details of your coverage. Please contact me and I can help guide you through the process.

Due to confidentiality and diagnosis issues, many people choose not to use their insurance. In order to use insurance, you must receive a mental health diagnosis which becomes part of your permanent medical record.

You may also be able to use your FLEX or HSA account through your employer for services for the full fee or on your co-pays and deductibles.

How Much Does Therapy Cost?

The fee for a therapy session is $130. Payment can be made with cash, check, or a credit card at the time of the session.

If you would like to use your insurance, your payment at the time of service will depend on your deductible and co-pay arrangements that your insurance company requires. I am in-network with BCBS PPO. I am happy to help you navigate the insurance process.

How Do I Know When To Ask For Help?

I think the fact that you’re asking the question and considering contacting a therapist means that you could benefit from therapy.

Typically, clients make that first call and schedule their first appointment when they feel that things are starting to feel out of control and affecting areas in their life such as relationships, jobs, health, or mood.  They often realize that what they are trying on their own is not working and that they could benefit from an outside perspective to help them identify and make changes.

Some symptoms may include feeling overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, depressed, sad, out of control, irritable, and angry.  Things that didn’t bother you before now make your skin crawl.  You may find yourself overreacting at situations or feeling extra sensitive.  You fly off the handle at those close to you – or even strangers.  You find it hard to get motivated about your daily life.  School, work, hobbies, and even relationships feel like a burden at times.

Often, people will experience physical symptoms, such as headaches, gastrointestinal issues, fatigue, and pain that a doctor cannot find a cause for.  They often visit several doctors and undergo numerous tests, with no findings that help explain their symptoms.

Many people come in for help with relationships that seem to be spiraling out of control.  Symptoms of relationships that are out of control include lack of communication and connection, increased conflict, and even affairs and abuse.

Others report that they’re not sure what is wrong, but they just know something is not right.

It is a huge step to ask for help.  Many people usually think about therapy and wait until things get really bad before making a call.  There many reasons for this – as far as the field of mental health has come in our society, there is still a stigma about  therapy –  a message that we should be able to handle all of our problems on our own.  Similar to physical health, there are times when an outside perspective with expertise and experience can help you move to a new place faster than on your own.  So many times, people wait until things get too bad to fix.

I know how difficult it can be to ask for help.  I am constantly amazed by those who have the courage to ask for help.  I will work my hardest to instill hope as well as specific, creative strategies for change.

How Long Will I Be in Therapy?

This is very specific to your situation.  Most people start with weekly sessions and then we continue to re-evaluate along the way.  Some clients come in for a couple of sessions and others meet longer term.  Depending on your goals, I will always work with you to decide how long you would like to meet.

Is Therapy Confidential?

In a manner consistent with ethical standards and the law of the State of Michigan, no client information will be released to anyone without your informed written consent.  This means I cannot disclose to anyone that you are involved in therapy or the content of your sessions, unless you sign a release of information clearly stating what I can disclose.

There are several exceptions to confidentiality, as required by law.  In the state of Michigan, counselors are required to break confidentiality when they believe their clients are at high-risk for suicide or when they hear a direct, specific homicidal threat from a client.  In addition, all counselors must report abuse or neglect of a child when they have reasonable cause to believe that such an incident occurred.

For additional issues related to therapy in the State of Michigan, please review the Michigan Mental Health Code (Your Rights When Receiving Mental Health Services in Michigan).

Different Types of Therapy

What is Individual Therapy?

Therapy is a process in which you work with a therapist to ‘unstick’ some of the problematic areas in your life.  In other words, often there are times in our life when we have difficulty finding solutions to our problems when things feel out of  control.

The therapist acts as a coach—you are responsible to make the changes.  The therapist will help you sort out some of your thoughts, and in some cases, challenge some of the thoughts that may be getting in the way of your positive, healthy changes.  When working with relationships, a therapist can assist with communication, conflict skills, and trust in a safe, objective environment.

What is Couples Therapy?

This is relational therapy with people in an intimate relationship who are struggling with their connection to each other.  Often, the couple is trying to make a decision whether to work on the relationship or to part ways.  It is not uncommon for this decision to take several sessions.  Once the decision to try to work on the relationship is made, the couple works with the therapist to identify goals and implement specific strategies for change.

What is Family Therapy?

Family therapy is conducted with at least two members of a family who are struggling with relationship problems.  This could be a parent and child, siblings, roommates, business colleagues, or an entire family.  Similar to couples therapy, the family system works with the therapist to identify goals and implement specific strategies for change.

Note:  It is not uncommon for therapy to involve several combinations of therapy to resolve certain issues. For example, one week doing individual therapy, the next week doing couple therapy.  Sometimes this is done with the same therapist—at other times it may be helpful to involve another therapist.