Frequently asked questions

Why should I consider therapy?
Most people who visit a therapist know that there is something they want to change, but they may not know how. Sometimes feelings of anxiety or depression, problems with relationships, challenges at work, or other social difficulties are hard to understand and resolve without help.

However, as much as people crave change or relief from an unhappy situation, sometimes there are reasons for holding on to old patterns that they may not be aware of. There may be an unrecognized benefit or a sense of safety that comes from keeping things the same – even if they really want to change. What good or bad things might happen to our relationships or self-image if we make big changes?

Therapy can be a place to explore the parts of your life that you may be ready to change. It can also be a place to look more closely at aspects that are more complex and tied to more long-standing – and sometimes ineffective – ways of thinking. Therapy can help make you aware of unconscious road blocks. More importantly, it can give you a path for negotiating and resolving the internal conflicts that may be holding you back and keeping you from living to your full potential.

What are the most common reasons people come to see you?
Often, an individual or couple comes to see me because they are in distress of some kind, such as anxiety, depression, conflicts with work or personal relationships, trauma, or loss. I feel that the very act of coming to therapy can be important and lead to positive changes in the way a person or couple functions.

What kind of psychotherapy do you practice?
There are many different types of psychotherapy. I have trained in several types and refer to them all at various times. I originally trained as a psychodynamic therapist, but I am also well-versed in cognitive and behavioral therapy. I believe patients benefit when a therapist has many different skills because people figure out who they are in many different ways. Most importantly, however, I believe that an effective therapeutic relationship creates the best environment for change.

For many people, though, symptoms such as anxiety or depression mean that something else needs attention. These deeper issues might be uncertainty about needs, feelings, and goals; difficulty communicating; or feelings of guilt, shame, or low self-esteem. People with these sorts of issues often benefit from more in-depth psychotherapy.

How long does therapy take?
I feel that therapy should (a) have clear and understandable goals, and (b) leave you feeling better, not worse. As we begin our work, we'll talk about your reasons for considering therapy. We'll also share our initial thoughts about your goals.

As we work together, we should have a sense that we are making progress. I believe in a mutual, reciprocal process that leads to a strong, trusting relationship. However, real change and growth can't be rushed or forced. These things sometimes take time and we will only be able to evaluate your progress once our work is underway.

How do I get started?
If you are interested in working with me, I encourage you to meet with me for a consultation appointment. In that session, we can talk about your reasons for pursuing therapy, and we can develop an initial idea of how it feels to work together. Feel free to contact me either by phone or email.