There are many reasons for which someone might be considering therapy. Sometimes this is a difficult decision to make. There are many things that seem like obstacles to seeking help including stigma around going to therapy, resources, and fear. Sometimes the strongest thing a person can do is to ask for help, though it may not feel like it. I will help make this process as comfortable as possible for you in an environment where you do not have to fear being judged. We will explore what is necessary to create a sense of safety for you.
I believe you have access to all the strength and internal resources you need to get to where you want to go, but your feelings, behaviors, and history have become obstacles to accessing your strength. If you don’t accept yourself as you are, you cannot change. It is a paradox, but, in my belief, true. I know how difficult self-acceptance can be, especially when you have a history of abuse, neglect, or complex trauma in which shame and guilt become integral to your sense of self. I think it is important to know that destructive behavior, thoughts or overwhelming emotion, in whatever form they show up for you, have their own logic. These emotions, thoughts, or behaviors make sense in some way. They are understandable given your life situation and history. We learn to cope in ways that serve in some way to defend ourselves in childhood and likely served a useful purpose back then. Now, they prevent you from having stable, fulfilling, intimate relationships, fulfilling careers, and feeling an empowered sense of self.
I utilize an integrative approach in which I draw from attachment theory, systems theory, relational psychodynamics, mindfulness, behaviorism and affective neuroscience. The goal is to work collaboratively with you to create a plan that works best for you and to provide and model a healthy relational process in our relationship. Research based interventions will be tailored based on your individual needs. I have advanced training in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Lifespan Integration, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and may utilize these if we agree that it makes sense based on your needs. The end result is increased insight and understanding, greater self-compassion, stress reduction, and an increased positive sense of self-esteem and self-efficacy. Therapy is a consistent process of refining behaviors to produce your desired state of mind while gaining insight into destructive patterns. I will provide a safe space, support, and hopefully just the right amount of nudging in order for this work to take place.
I particularly enjoy working with individuals (including school-aged children) who have complex trauma issues including child abuse and neglect, sexual abuse and assault, and domestic violence (including issues of power and control). I also work with those who act in ways that hurt the ones they love in gaining insight around the cause of their behavior and in learning more effective ways to manage emotional states. I have worked with a wide variety of difficulties including anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, emotional regulation, and dissociation.
Couples therapy helps couples--married or not--heterosexual or not--understand and resolve conflicts and improve their relationships. Couples counseling gives couples the tools to communicate better, negotiate differences, understand emotions, problem solve and even argue in a healthier way.
Most relationships are not perfect. Your relationship is a system. Each of you brings your own ideas, values, opinions and personal history into your relationship, and these don't always match your partner's. These differences don't necessarily mean your relationship is doomed. To the contrary, differences can be complementary and enriching. Learning to cope with differences in your relationship can also help you understand, respect and accept opposing views in other areas of your life, making you a more well grounded human being.
Relationships can be tested. Differences or habits that you once found endearing may eventually grate on your nerves after time together. Distress in a relationship can create undue stress, tension, sadness, worry, fear and problems in other areas of your life. Sometimes specific issues, such as an extramarital affair, excess job stress, or loss of sexual attraction, trigger problems in a relationship. Other times, there's a gradual disintegration of communication and caring. You may hope your relationship troubles just go away over time, but this hope often produces more distance.
I will help you and your partner identify the conflict issues within your relationship, and will help you decide what changes are needed from each of you for you both to feel satisfied with the relationship.
These changes may be different ways of interacting within the relationship, or they may be individual changes related to personal psychological problems. Couples therapy involves learning how to communicate more effectively and how to listen more closely. Couples must learn how to avoid competing with each other and need to identify common life goals and how to share responsibilities within their relationship. Sometimes the process is very similar to individual psychotherapy, sometimes it is more like mediation, and sometimes it is educational. The combination of these three components is what makes it effective.
FEES, INSURANCE, AND CANCELLATION POLICY
My current fee for a 55-minute individual psychotherapy session is $170. My current fee for a 55 minute couples session is $180. Appointments that are not canceled with at least 48-hour notice will be charged the full fee for that session. Insurance and Medicare will not pay for missed sessions, so it is important for you to know that those will be out-of-pocket for you. I have a limited number of reduced fee spots available.
I accept traditional Medicare, Labor and Industries, Premera, Blue Cross Blue Shield, LifeWise, Kaiser, Cigna, and First Choice and will provide out-of-network services if you have other insurance coverage. You are responsible for paying all co-pays and deductibles. For out-of-network coverage, I can bill your insurance company or I can provide you with a bill to submit for reimbursement. It is your responsibility to check with your insurance company regarding what your benefits are for outpatient therapy, including deductible and preauthorization requirements. If your insurance company elects to not cover your treatment, you will be responsible for paying the full amount. With the exception of specific circumstances, insurance typically does not cover couples or marriage therapy. We can discuss these circumstances when we meet.
For your convenience, I offer credit card payments. Please contact me for instructions on how to use your credit card or HSA card to pay.