Why should I go to therapy? Shouldn’t I be able to solve my problems on my own?
A mental health professional can listen to you without judgment or expectations, help you clarify your thoughts, feelings, and values, examine different perspectives, and help you to approach your situation in new ways. You probably take your car to a mechanic, your teeth to a dentist, and your body to a medical doctor; you may find that discussing your thoughts, emotions, behaviors, or relationships with a mental health professional, at least occasionally, is also valuable for your personal or relationship well-being.
Would medication solve my problems?
Medication alone usually does not solve issues. Medication can be effective and may be useful in conjunction with therapy. Our work together will help you explore your problem and examine your behavior, emotions, and thinking. Then we will develop strategies and skills to help you meet your emotional and behavioral goals and improve your relationships.
How long will it take?
It isn’t possible to answer that question until we discuss your problem and goals. Each person’s circumstances are unique to them, so the length of time to accomplish your goals in therapy is dependent on multiple factors, such as: the amount of time you can commit to the work of therapy, your lifestyle and demands on your time and energy, and the factors that are inspiring you to seek therapy.
How does it work? What do I have to do in sessions?
Couples therapy usually involves building communication skills, conflict resolution, goal-setting, and specific skills related to what you desire to work on. Sex therapy usually involves similar skills with a focus on physical, sexual, and intimacy skills. Since each person has different issues and goals for therapy, the approach needed to accomplish your goals must be adapted for you.
I want to get the most out of therapy. What can I do to help?
Your active participation is crucial to accomplishing your goals. Usually we only meet for one session per week, so the work you do outside of our sessions is vital to the process of growth, change, and healing. We will collaborate on designing outside practice that may include writing, physical exercises, behavioral experiments, relaxation, or other skills. All learning requires practice, including growth from therapy.
My partner and I are having problems, but my partner refuses to come with me to therapy. Can I do therapy alone?
It is almost always best to work on couple problems together. However, it is possible for you to make changes in individual therapy that may encourage or cause your partner to change, too. Also, it is possible to ask your partner again to join you in therapy in a way that would encourage them to attend with you, either once or as a partner with you.
I want Christian-based therapy. Do you offer that?
Yes, I have over 40 years of experience working with Christians of all denominations. I have training in theology, Biblical counseling, and experience in pastoral care. I have also taught graduate students in several Christian universities.