FAQs

Why do people seek therapy and what benefits can I expect to see when working with a therapist?

  • There are a variety of reasons that might bring someone into therapy, including difficulty managing stress or anger, feelings of anxiety or depression, transitions, relationship difficulties, work challenges, self-esteem issues, trauma, body image issues, addiction, grief and loss, and spiritual conflicts. Therapy can help one to increase insight and awareness, gain coping skills, increase confidence and self-esteem, and improve communication.  Therapy is collaborative, but it is most effective when the client or clients take responsibility for doing the work both inside and outside of the therapy room.

What if I don’t know what goals to work towards in therapy?

  • After completion of an assessment, we will come up with goals to work towards collaboratively. Your goals can be reevaluated or revised at any time.

Do you offer telephone consultations?

  • Yes, please feel free to call me at 773-343-2781. First time phone consultations are free of charge.

How does insurance coverage work?

  • If you are a BCBS or Aetna member, please contact customer service in order to verify mental health coverage. It is important to ask the following series of questions:
    1. Do I have a deductible? If yes, how much? You will also want to ask how much towards the deductible has been met.
    2. Do I have a co-payment or co-insurance for services?
    3. What is the out-of-pocket maximum per calendar year? What is my current accumulation?
    4. How many sessions per calendar year will be covered? What is the lifetime maximum number of sessions that insurance will cover?
    5. Is pre-authorization required for outpatient mental health services in an office setting?

Are counseling sessions confidential?

  • Yes. In 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was enacted. This law was initiated to ensure your privacy. There are several important limitations to note. If there is indication of a safety risk, including harm to self, harm to others, physical abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect of a child, or physical, sexual, or financial abuse of the elderly, I am mandated to report this information to the appropriate entity.
  • Further, any minor 12 years of age or older may request and receive counseling services or psychotherapy on an outpatient basis without the consent of the minor’s parent or guardian. Outpatient counseling or psychotherapy provided to a minor under the age of 17 shall be limited to not more than 5 sessions, a session lasting not more than 45 minutes, until the consent of the minor’s parent or guardian is obtained.  The minor’s parents shall not be informed without the consent of the minor unless the psychotherapist believes such disclosure is necessary.  The minor’s parent or guardian is not liable for the costs of the outpatient counseling or psychotherapy. 405 ILCS 5/3-501.

What’s the best way to schedule an appointment?

  • There are three fast and convenient ways to schedule an appointment with me. On the Contact page, you will find my telephone number, my email address, and a contact form that you can fill out and submit.

What happens during our first session?

  • Our first session will be devoted to reviewing important documentation regarding confidentiality and service and fee agreements, answering any questions you may have about the therapeutic process or my clinical background, and taking a psychosocial assessment in order to obtain information about your presenting problems and your history. Goals for treatment will also be discussed.

How long is a session and how often do we meet?

  • Sessions are sixty minutes in length. At the onset of therapy, typically clients meet with me once a week. As progress is made, the frequency of sessions may decrease.  This is something that the client and I will discuss and agree upon together. Under certain circumstances, it may be appropriate to meet with the client more than once a week in order to help guide them through a crisis.

How many sessions does a client typically attend?

  • The length of time a client attends therapy usually depends on the presenting problems and the client’s progress in treatment. If a client is paying for treatment through their insurance provider, the number of sessions allowable may be limited depending on the insurance provider’s coverage policy. It is recommended that you contact your insurance provider to obtain this information before beginning treatment.

Do you have times available other than week days?

  • Yes, I am available for Saturday appointments. Availability is limited, so please call or email me to find out if your schedule can be accommodated.

Will I need medication?

  • For certain clients, medication may be beneficial in order to help alleviate symptoms. As a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, I am not authorized to prescribe medication; however, after completion of the assessment, I may recommend that you seek out a psychiatric consultation in order to discuss the option of taking medication. Medication must be prescribed by an M.D. If it is determined that medication may be helpful, I would be happy to assist you with locating a psychiatrist in your area.