Questions About Therapy
How long is a typical session and how many times a week should I see a therapist?
Sessions are usually 50 minutes. Most clients are seen once or twice a week in the beginning and as time goes on less frequently. The number of sessions depends on what your current needs are. Together we will develop a plan that works for you while allowing you to keep important life obligations. This can be discussed during your initial session.
How long should I be in therapy?
The length of time a client is in therapy largely depends the nature of the problem and the identified goals. Some clients have a very specific problem that can be worked through in a course of brief therapy. Other individuals see therapy as an on-going learning process and choose to be involved in therapy for a longer period.
Do you have a particular theoretical approach to counseling?
Our approach is eclectic, however some of our counselors lean more towards various counseling approaches such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or through Mindfulness. Because we believe therapy does not stop once you leave the office, we may provide you a homework assignment to encourage insight and growth.
Are counseling sessions confidential?
Your counseling sessions will be confidential within the confines of the law. Confidentiality is a critical part of the therapeutic process. In order to make the most progress possible, it is essential that you can trust your therapist and feel comfortable in freely talking about the most intimate and personal parts of your life, without concern that those details will be revealed to anyone else. The law in Illinois provides that the rule of confidentiality can only be broken in the most extreme circumstances, e.g. if a person is currently involved in acts of child abuse, if you are clearly likely to cause bodily harm to yourself or others, or if you waive in writing your right to confidentiality. During our initial session, you will be provided specifics information about confidentiality in what is commonly referred to as an Informed Consent Form. You will also be provided information regarding the Health Insurance Portability Act (HIPAA).
What should I know about e-mail communications – including confidentiality?
Our email program employs encryption technology via a SSL Socket. Be advised however that the confidentiality of email has limitations and that confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. Do not use email during a crisis. In the case of a medical emergency, call your local emergency response number – which for many areas is 911.
What is the first session like?
The first session is a chance for you to become acquainted with your counselor and to learn about your background and history. Your therapist will usually ask more questions than usual during this session so he/she can gain some perspective on whatever problems or issues you are wanting to address. Our goal is to offer you a warm, gentle environment that promotes sharing.
Do offer telephone consultations?
Telephone consultations may be available to you provided that this means of communication is compatible with your needs and particular situation. Please note that telephone consultations are for guidance purposes only. Please contact us for more information.
How much are your Fees and do you take insurance?
Your fee will depend on what kind of services you request. You can learn more about the insurance we accept, fees, methods of payment, and general payment policy by clicking here
Should I take medications?
As a therapists, we are not legally allowed to prescribe medications. However, based on a joint assessment of problems you are facing, it may be advisable to consult with a psychiatrist to determine whether medication is warranted. Typically, clients see someone under their health insurance coverage or we can refer you to a psychiatrist. If you do begin taking medication, your therapist, with your written permission, can collaborate with your psychiatrist to design a plan of treatment most appropriate for you.
What is 2nd Story Counseling?
2nd Story Counseling (2SC) is an offshoot of Second Story Consultants, LLC. The organization provides training, consultation and other services to counselors who are members of the organization’s “Circle Alliance”. 2 S C helps these therapists pool together resources so that together, a variety of services and programs can be offered to clients which might not otherwise be available through a single provider. Learn more about 2SC here.
What is an Alliance Counselor?
An Alliance Counselor is a therapist in private practice who has chosen to form an “alliance” with themselves and 2 S C in order to combine financial resources for marketing services, training and consultation. Typically, alliance counselors use 2 S C space in order to meet with clients. Alliance Counselors are not employees of 2SC. Instead, 2 S C works for them as consultants. In its purest form, 2 S C is a joint venture between independent providers and a consulting firm. Combined with other counselors, they become part of a “circle alliance”.