Common Questions

How can counseling help me?

Counseling can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, and stress management. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Counselors can provide a different perspective of your problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from counseling depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn.

Some of the benefits available from therapy include:

  • Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
  • Developing skills for improving your relationships
  • Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek counseling
  • Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
  • Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
  • Improving communications and listening skills
  • Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
  • Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
  • Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence

What can I expect in a counseling session?

Counseling will be different depending on the individual, because each person has different issues and goals for counseling.  In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress  from the previous counseling session. Depending on your specific needs, counseling can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult issues or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular weekly sessions with your counselor.  The majority of sessions will last 45-60 minutes in length.

It is important to understand that you will get more results from counseling if you actively participate in the process. The goal of counseling is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Your counselor may suggest things you can do outside of sessions to support your process – such as reading a pertinent book, journaling, tracking particular behaviors or taking action on your goals. People who seek out counseling are ready to make positive changes in their lives, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives.

 

Confidentiality and counseling sessions

Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and counselor. Successful counseling requires trust that the topics and issues discussed will not be shared anywhere else but in the counselor’s office. The counselor 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”. However, you may want your counselor to share information or give an update to someone  (your Primary Doctor, Psychiatrist, Agency Case Worker, School), but by law your counselor cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.
However, state law and professional ethics require counselors to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:

  • Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
  • If the counselor has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming self or has threated to harm another person.

 

What is Play Therapy?

 

 
acquired certification as a registered play therapist! via @LauraNiederer
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