Frequently Asked Questions

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How long does counseling last?

  • The duration of counseling depends on many factors, but solution-focused, cognitive, brief therapy is considered among the most rapid in terms of results obtained with an average of 12-16 sessions. Other forms of therapy, like psychoanalysis, can take years.

  • What enables solution-focused, cognitive, brief therapy to achieve goals more quickly, is its highly instructive nature and the fact that it makes use of homework assignments between sessions. Solution-focused, cognitive therapy is time-limited in that it helps clients understand at the very beginning of the process that there will be a point when the formal therapy will end. The ending of the formal therapy is a decision made by the therapist and client. As a result, solution-focused, cognitive therapy is not an open-ended, never-ending process.

Is counseling only about feelings?

  • No – while feelings are very important and need to be acknowledged, feelings are often driven by what we think and how we interpret the events happening to us. Even at times when we feel anxious or depressed or panicked, we can often put these feelings aside if an emergency arises or a loved one requires our help. Where does the anxiety or depression or panic go in those moments?

  • Solution-focused, cognitive therapy is about honoring feelings, but doesn’t just leave a person feeling “understood” or “listened to” – it also provides tools to change how you think about and react to certain situations that create negative emotions that may overwhelm you.

  • Research repeatedly validates cognitive therapy as the treatment of choice for depression, anxiety, anger and/or stress management, prolonged grief, trauma, panic, and weight control.

Do you work with adults struggling with childhood and/or adult trauma?

  • Yes – our solution-focused, cognitive-behavioral, and narrative approach offers practical, research-based tools and resources that provide a safe space to talk, set boundaries, regulate panic, and create structure to deal with past events. This sets the stage to reframe past experiences so that you see yourself as a person who has survived, rather than as a victim, while providing a path to restoration and hope for the future.

Our relationship isn’t bad, but can it be even better?

  • Absolutely – there is a great deal of empirical, research-based information and practical knowledge that can help couples refine their skills and develop even greater closeness. We’d be glad to refer you to useful resources and provide you with experiences and guidance for enhancing and deepening your relationship.

Do you have experience dealing with affairs and infidelity?

  • Yes – we work regularly with couples whose relationship has been shaken by an emotional or physical affair. We provide a safe environment to help each partner understand what happened, express hurt, clarify issues, seek and offer forgiveness, and rebuild trust. Affairs do not have to be the end of a marriage or relationship and as noted earlier – we advocate for your marriage, working diligently to hold the hope of renewal and the restoration of your marriage relationship.

My partner doesn’t want to participate, is there anything I can do?

  • Absolutely – since our approach in MarriageRenew® is to address relationship issues from a “family systems” perspective, we know that one motivated individual can have a positive impact on the relationship, even if their partner is not ready or willing to engage in the counseling process at this time.

Is there hope for our marriage?

  • Yes – our focus with MarriageRenew® and as a member of the exclusive Directory of Marriage Friendly Therapists is to offer hope for restoration and renewal of hurting and broken relationships. Our approach includes careful assessment from a solution-focused family systems perspective, direct feedback with practical suggestions, coaching in application of tools and resources, and exercises and/or brief readings between sessions. Ours is not a passive or even neutral approach. We advocate for your marriage and we work diligently to hold the hope of renewal and restoration of your marriage relationship.

Do you specialize?

  • Yes – we specialize in working with adult clients who are seeking marriage/couples counseling (an approach we call MarriageRenew®) and with individuals facing significant life challenges which lead to feelings of uncertainty, anxiety, depression, grief, loss of hope, fear of the future and/or a lost sense of purpose and direction.  We will not treat people outside our own competency and will refer clients when there are other services better suited to their needs.

We are retiring soon – what advice would you have for us?

  • Couples invest major time in anticipating the financial challenges and creating strategies around savings for a financially secure retirement. Shouldn’t the relational side of the retirement equation deserve equal time with thoughtful consideration and deliberate planning? Our belief and commitment is that couples at all stages of life should look forward to a future of secure and lasting love, intimacy, and friendship.

Can people change?

  • Yes – however, it depends entirely on you. To offer perspective, our clients tend to be people who:

    • want life to be different and are motivated to change.

    • are willing to be pro-active in taking back control of their lives.

    • acknowledge it takes hard work and time to achieve desired results.

    • are willing to take risks and deal with difficult issues.

    • are not content with surface change and temporary relief.It is the individual and/or couple’s willingness to pursue personal change - even in the face of internal uncertainties, fears, or external resistance - that makes all the difference.

Do you accept insurance - What are your fees?

  • We do not accept insurance, rather, we offer a significantly discounted private-pay rate of $120/hour session. If you have an HSA or FSA, funds from those accounts may be used for counseling sessions. We accept HSA/FSA debit cards, all other credit/debit cards, checks, and cash.