In my view, counseling is a process for supporting individuals who are struggling with problems that have occurred recently and that can be resolved in a few sessions. These might include life transitional stresses or relationship problems.
Psychotherapy involves exploring deeper to gently find a core wound that may have occurred in early childhood that continues to interfere with social, educational, or occupational functioning. Psychotherapy helps individuals who have experienced early messages in life that have been hurtful, or who have experienced some form of psychological, emotional, physical, or sexual trauma.
Often, our psyche (mind) tries to protect us from that trauma by suppressing the memories or emotions related to it, but it’s often still there – being housed in the subconscious mind or in the body. Psychotherapy helps release this trauma so that it can be safely processed to reduce suffering so that individuals can live their lives more freely and seek their natural state of being: peaceful and calm and on a journey toward happiness.
Before the very first session you will have to fill out some required paperwork.
This first session is called an “in-take session”. You and I will talk, and I will ask questions and so can you. We will start looking at your reason for seeking counseling or therapy. I try to collect as much information in order to better understand you, and this is done at your pace and comfort level.
I honor the fact that you don’t know me, and it may have been hard to just get to this point of seeking support.
If you are bringing in your adolescent, once the required documentation is filled out and signed, the session can proceed with you in the room, or if the adolescent is comfortable meeting with me alone, we can proceed that way, too.
My wish is that all my clients feel as comfortable and safe, especially in their first session with me.
Most clients, if they are dealing with a phase of life problem (change or loss), will generally need around 4-5 sessions. Some clients only see me once to resolve an issue and are done. If there are more serious or historical problems such as trauma, my clients stay with me longer.
It is very much up to you and what you are presenting with that determines the type of counseling plan we develop. We will work on this together.