Common Questions

Are you going to tell me what to do?
Does therapy really work?

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Common questions about the process:

Clients ask me all kinds of questions before entering into treatment together. I welcome them. It’s best for us to discuss any concerns you have before we start.

You really are the guide to the direction we take in our therapy.  I am a direct therapist, and I don’t hold back on offering my take on things-but no, I will not be telling you what to do, trying to convince you to either stay or leave, or presume to know what’s best for you.

I will, however, take your direction on what you want out of therapy-and help you make the healthy wise decisions you need to make for yourself.  And we can take as long as you like to decide, because doing nothing while we look for clarity is in fact doing something.

This one’s easy-we’ll know if it’s working because I’ll ask you from time to time “Is this working?”  If you aren’t sure then we have work to do together to establish clear goals or directions to our work, and to continue to check in with each other about whether the therapy is helpful or not.
You don’t have to talk about anything you don’t want to, no.  If it makes sense to talk about your past, of course we may hear about that.  Learning about your past is also an important part of getting to know you, and understand you.  But I’m much more interested in the present than I am in the past.  
In order to get the most out of therapy once a week is certainly the best case scenerio-especially at the beginning of treatment.  
 That depends on the goals for treatment, which we establish up front when you come in, and we revisit throughout the course of our work together.  I have several clients who I’ve been seeing for several years, once a week.  I also have had many clients who come in to work on a specific situation or emotional turmoil in their life, and once they achieve a level of functioning, insight and/or clarity about it, we decide together that they can finish treatment.  It depends.  

Common questions about Couples Counseling:

Couples counseling can be confusing at times, especially when the desire to attend is greater for one, and not the other. Or, when one of you wants to meet with the me individually. it’s best to talk about these potential scenarios ahead of time.

Always a tough one.  If a partner is unwilling to come, it’s unlikely they’ll be willing to do the work if we convince them to attend, but it’s worth a shot.  I’m happy to talk to spouses who are reluctant to come in-and of course there’s no commitment required-I often meet individually with the partners to make sure we’re a good fit-and that couples counseling has a chance to work
Sometimes what we do is a sort of “individual couples counseling” meaning one person is willing to come, and we work on relationship skills and issues.  After a certain length of time we’ve established a one on one relationship, and bringing in the spouse too much later generally isn’t indicated.  I would consider giving you a referral for another marriage counselor if that happened.

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