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Therapy Guidelines

Father & daughter
Father & daughter

How does therapy work?

In general, therapy helps by providing a quiet place in which you, the client, can study and learn more about your thoughts, feelings and behavior. The therapist contributes by asking questions and sharing observations; sometimes the therapist offers information or opinions for you to consider or experiments for you to try as well as suggestions for activities between sessions.

You determine the goals of therapy in consultation with the therapist. You contribute in therapy by sharing the relevant parts of your history as well as your current experience. You also get more out of therapy when you put into practice between sessions the therapist's suggestions that seem helpful to you as well as your own ideas about how to change your life in order to reach your goals.

Participating in individual, couples, family, or group psychotherapy can help you learn new and important things about yourself and others as well as new alternatives for self-care, expression of feelings, handling of problems, and relating with others.

back to top How do you know if therapy is helping?

While there is no guarantee that a course of psychotherapy will help you achieve the goals that you and your therapist agree on, coming to therapy should help you feel better and produce beneficial results. There are several ways to gauge when therapy is working: you feel less worried, afraid or anxious; problems are being resolved; relationships are improving; or you are feeling better about yourself.

Sometimes you may feel worse before you feel better; when this occurs, it is often a part of the therapeutic process and can mean that you are making progress toward your goals. Periodically, consider whether therapy is helping you and keep your therapist informed about what is working for you or not.

You have the right to ask questions about any aspect of your therapy. You have the right to a copy of either the therapist's file on your work or a summary of that file (at the therapist's discretion) unless either would, in the professional opinion of the therapist, be likely to injure you or another or unnecessarily cause you or another significant distress. If therapy is not working for you, it is highly recommended that you discuss this with your therapist before ending therapy. You have the right to end therapy at any time.

back to top Confidentiality

Matters discussed with a client are treated with the strictest confidence by our therapist, who is legally responsible for safeguarding all files and information pertaining to each client. Some of the exceptions to this confidentiality include situations where and when any of the following occurs:

  • The client (or guardian if the client is a child) gives written consent to release specified information to specified parties. If there are more than one person participating in the same therapy (couples, family, etc.), all parties must consent in writing for release of information about themselves.
  • The therapist is required by law to report any suspected child, elder or dependent adult abuse and any situations where the client threatens violence against an identifiable victim that the therapist believes could be acted upon.
  • The law permits the therapist to break confidentiality when the therapist believes that a client presents a danger to self or others and/or their property unless protective measures are taken.
  • Disclosures may be required in certain legal proceedings and actions.
  • Working with couples, families, and groups, our therapists will not hold confidential from others included in therapy any conversation or interaction with an individual member of therapy. In these instances, the therapist holds no secrets between clients.
back to top Fees & Appointments

Fees should be agreed on between therapist and client(s) by the end of the first session and are usually "per-session". Some therapists, including our office, offer a sliding scale fee for clients on limited income. Generally, clients pay for all scheduled therapy sessions not attended unless other arrangements have been made with the therapist at least 24 hours in advance.

If you call us within 20 minutes of the start of your scheduled session and arrive at any time during your scheduled session, you may meet with your therapist for the remainder of the scheduled time. If our therapist misses or cancels a session without giving you at least 24 hours' notice, you will be credited for one additional session. To contact our office, click here.


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