The first step is to call me at (310) 740-1969. If I am unavailable at that moment, I will call you back within 24-48 hours. The point of this phone call is to talk briefly about what's coming up for you in life that you'd like to address in therapy. Then we can look at our calendars together and schedule an appointment and/or I will provide you with referrals to other people or services that might be helpful to you.
The most important element in therapy is trust with the therapist. You need to feel comfortable opening up about your life situation. And this is really only something you can determine based on how you feel when you sit face to face with me.
The initial phone call can be a useful opportunity to ask questions about my training, expertise, and areas of specialty. It can also be a chance to gage more superficially your level of ease in conversing with me, but is not a substitute for in-person contact.
Finally, having some idea of what you'd like to work on and what you'd like to see different in your life is always helpful to bring to the table. This will allow me to share my impressions of how we might collaborate to achieve your goals and allow you to make an informed decision about how to proceed.
Every situation, every individual, every family, and every context is different, so there is no one prescribed course of therapy. How much you get out of therapy directly correlates to how much you put into it, and how often or how long you come for before you see a change in your life is different for everyone. My objective is to help you find resources both internally and externally that you can bring to your life outside of the therapy room, allowing you to navigate life's challenges more effectively. I also aim to help you build healthier relationships so that your support network expands well beyond the 4 walls of the therapy room. All that said, I tend to think Carl Rogers said it best: "The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction not a destination."
Therapy works best when it's done weekly or even more often. Especially while we are first building rapport and trust in the therapeutic relationship, I do not recommend planning to come less frequently than once per week to maximize progress toward your goals.
The simple answer is yes. Therapy is a confidential process. Your visits, your personal information, and everything we talk about is private. Unless you make a written request to have any of your records released, no information about you leaves my office.
All that said, there are legal limitations to confidentiality. These are as follows:
If you are concerned about confidentiality, please bring it up with me so we can discuss your concerns further.
I do not take insurance but am happy to provide you with a monthly receipt which you can submit to your insurance company in case they provide any out-of-network reimbursement coverage.
For this reason, the assessment process at the beginning is critical. I spend time on the phone initially with my clients to get some sense of their presenting concerns and we use the initial in-person consultation to get to know each other and cover exactly what it is you want to work on.
If we discover that you are wanting to work on something specific that is outside of my scope of treatment, I consider it part of my ethical duty to help connect you with local professionals who can help you. I keep an up-to-date list of quality resources and am happy to provide outside referrals throughout the process