Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know you are the right therapist for me?
I love answering this question! I can’t stress enough, how important it is that you are able to connect with your therapist. Studies suggest that the fit between client and therapist is an important predictor for successful therapy outcomes.
I recommend that during our initial interview/first session you ask me questions. I want you to get a sense of what it feels like to work with me. It’s OK to be curious about the therapeutic process and it’s important that you feel heard, supported, and understood. I’m hopeful that after meeting me, you will know if you would like to continue.
What is your availability?
Individual and couples counseling in San Diego is open to anyone who is seeking both positive and lasting change. Therapy appointments are offered in the morning, afternoon, and in the evening. Unfortunately, I do not offer weekend appointments at this time.
What is your approach to therapy?
While I am trained in the traditional models of therapy, I work through an Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) / Experiential lens. EFT is a process that addresses relational conflict from an attachment-based perspective.
Due to the success rate of this approach, EFT, has been internationally recognized in various scientific journals. Please visit “What is EFT?” to learn more about this model of treatment.
Does Emotionally FOcused therapy (EFT) only work with couples?
No- Emotionally Focused Therapy also works well with individuals and families.
Although I tailor treatment to meet the unique needs of my clients, the EFT framework often serves as a road-map and foundation for all of my therapeutic work.
In addition to EFT, I often engage in experiential and systems therapy approaches. Please visit the “individual therapy” subsection found in the “therapy services” drop-down menu if you have questions regarding my services.
What are some of the goals of the EFT approach when it pertains to couples?
Break free from chronic cycles of frustration, sadness, loneliness, and pain.
Make sense of both your needs and emotions as well as your partner’s needs in the relationship.
Heal injuries, reignite connection and passion, and begin to forgive.
Learn productive patterns of communication.
(Re)build trust and increase intimacy.
Increase vulnerability, closeness, and learn how to stay connected when differences arise.
Learn how to have honest, soft, and vulnerable dialogues with one another.
Repair and resolve conflict so that you can experience a lifetime of connection and love with your loved one.
Enhance communication skills.
Strengthen and deepen your couples bond.
Do you have a social media policy?
Yes. Unfortunately, I cannot accept friend requests from current or former clients on any social networking site. Adding clients as friends on these sites can compromise client privacy and confidentiality. It can also affect the therapeutic relationship.
Who do you treat?
Although my San Diego practice is centered around couples counseling and women’s issues, I also treat individuals and families- still working through an attachment-based lens. I also offer premarital counseling, relationship therapy, and adolescent counseling. I often incorporate other models of therapy, depending on the presenting issue(s).
What is therapy?
Therapy, also referred to as "counseling" or "psychotherapy," is the process of meeting with a therapist with the goal of resolving and working through problematic beliefs, cycles, feelings, behaviors, and/or somatic responses.
Through counseling in San Diego, you can improve your relationships, heal from past traumas, change self-destructive habits, and overcome painful feelings. Therapy should be a safe and supportive place- a space where you work one-on-one with your therapist to resolve both inner and relational conflict.
What is the best way to contact you?
The easiest way to reach me is via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you prefer to connect via phone, please contact me at: 858.333.7647. I return all calls as quickly as possible. Please allow at least one business day for a return call.
Please indicate the type of therapy you would like to engage in- whether it's couples counseling, individual therapy, marriage counseling, premarital therapy, or family therapy. If you are unsure, I can help you decide.
Please be aware that connecting with me via e-mail may compromise your confidentiality and privacy. If you choose to communicate with me through e-mail, please be advised that all messages are retained in the logs of your Internet service provider. Although it is highly unlikely that the system administrator of your service provider would look at these logs, they are accessible.
How often should I attend therapy and how long does treatment last?
Couples counseling, marriage counseling, relationship therapy, and individual therapy, is generally most effective when people attend at least one 50-minute session per week, until their symptoms dissipate or until conflict is resolved.
Counseling can be an effective and powerful way to work through many challenges. Because therapy is a process, there is no way to accurately predict how long it will last. Counseling can be short-term, but depending on the unique challenges in your life, your goals, and your personal/relational history, the process may last longer. It is always best to come in for an intake session to see what is clinically recommended.
How long will it take before I begin to feel better?
While many people experience relief after the first few sessions, it may take time to meet all your treatment goals. Processing, working through complex challenges, and repairing relationships can take time. While the duration of therapy is different for everyone, counseling does not have to be “long-term” in order for it to be effective. Some people meet their treatment goals within 8-12 sessions.
Can I discuss anything in your office?
Yes, feel free to share your dreams, your fears, your quirks, your needs, and all of your complicated emotions with me. I want our time together to be safe, supportive, and empowering. It’s OK to be yourself- and it’s OK if you feel like your life is “messy.” I am here to help you organize, process, and heal from your pain. I want to support you through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
I encourage vulnerability and authenticity- these are beautiful things. I like to laugh and connect, but more importantly, I want to make sure that I am understanding my clients and helping them reach their goals. I like solutions- but I also believe in unconditional positive regard and the power of empathy and understanding.
What types of issues do you treat?
I treat a wide variety of issues, including but not limited to: depression, anxiety, panic, relational distress, infidelity, bereavement, loss, and trauma. Please visit my “individual therapy” or “couples therapy” section(s) to learn more about the issues I treat.
If I am unable to meet a person’s specific needs, I may offer a referral to a provider who specializes in a specific area. Although this does not occur often, it is a possibility. My goal is to make sure that everyone receives the highest level of care.
I have heard that many people feel drained or exhausted after therapy. Is there a reason why this can occur?
While counseling can be relaxing and cathartic, it can also be tough work. This is because there will be moments where we work through emotionally laden issues. You can expect to feel a variety of emotions during therapy. Whether you are engaging in couples therapy, marriage counseling, relationship counseling, or individual therapy, you will find, that there will be “great” sessions (aka, break-through sessions)- sessions that can be life-changing and empowering, but there will also be “difficult” ones- ones that challenge you to the core. I will be with you every step of the way. You will not go on this journey alone.
Do we have to explore my childhood during therapy?
The answer to this question varies depending on the individual. I am the type of therapist who does not like to “stay in the past” or focus on it unless it is affecting an individual in the “here and now.”
While successful therapy often involves understanding how your childhood experiences may have contributed to the issues you are encountering in life and in your relationships, it is not necessary that we focus on the past. With this said, I do like to have an understanding of one’s personal story as well as their attachment history.
If you are looking to heal from a trauma that occurred when you were a child, you can expect that we will discuss your past. Although we may touch on some heavy topics, we will work at a pace that is comfortable for you and I will make sure that we also tune into your strengths and potential.
I am not sure if anything is really “wrong” with me, but I’m just not feeling like myself. Can therapy help?
Absolutely! I am a firm believer that counseling can be beneficial for just about anyone. Life does not always cooperate and at some point on your journey things may become difficult for reasons out of your control. You may feel hopeless at times, or you may just feel a little off. The good news is, whether you are struggling immensely or just needing some support around a few issues, therapy can help you reach your goals.
What are the fees?
Therapy is an investment in you, your future, and in your close relationships. Fees charged for 50-minute and 90-minute sessions are equivalent to fees charged by other similarly-qualified therapists in the San Diego and greater San Diego area. The fee schedule is based on the value of my experience, continuing education, knowledge, skills, and time. My fees are the same whether you are engaging in couples therapy, marriage counseling, premarital therapy, individual counseling, or family counseling.
My fee is $150.00 for a 50-minute session. Payment for sessions can be made through check, cash, or credit card.
What if I can’t afford the fees?
I reserve a small portion of my practice for clients who need a reduction in fees. If you cannot afford the full fee, feel free to call me to inquire about the lower fee slots. If I have any available, I am more than happy to accommodate you. I want to make sure that the fees don’t create a barrier to your treatment.
DO YOU TAKE INSURANCE?
I am not contracted with any insurance provider. However, some insurance plans allow individuals to see "out-of-network providers." Please contact your insurance company to find out what your plan does or does not cover. If your plan allows for you to see an out-of-network provider, I can provide you with an invoice so that you can seek reimbursement of session fees via your insurance company. ***Please note, you may be reimbursed the full or a partial amount of the session fee depending on your insurance provider and plan.
Where is your office located?
Couples and individual therapy appointments are offered in Mission Valley, San Diego.
How do I get started?
I understand that beginning the therapeutic process may seem overwhelming or intimidating. For many, therapy is “new territory;” and, thus, can be scary because it’s the unknown. Further, reaching out can be tough because many of us are creatures of habit- we thrive in predictable and familiar environments (and attending counseling is not always familiar, at least at first).
So how do you break through the barrier and reach out? Well... you just begin. You take the first step and you don’t look back. You see, when we are unhappy, it can be beneficial to take a leap of faith and leave behind the “known.” We need to stop being what I call “uncomfortably comfortable” so that we can move towards happiness. Reaching out will bring you one step closer to the relief that you deserve.
Who said we can’t reinvent ourselves? Who said we can’t create a life that we love?
The leap is critical, because it can lead to positive change, relief, and happiness. The second step (after the initial leap) involves showing up to our session. And I will take it from there. Remember, courage starts with showing up.
If you are ready to take the leap- request a discovery call or book an appointment with me today by clicking the link below. I am here to listen, support, and to help you through your darkest hour. Let’s do this together, one step at a time.