Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Do I have to have problems for counseling to benefit me?
NO! Many people seek counseling to gain balance, insight, and to accentuate their lives by allowing themselves to be challenged by an objective, informed, and experienced professional. Milestone is staffed by well seasoned persons who can help you focus on your strengths in order to help you achieve the yet unrealized potential within you. This positive psychology approach will give you the ability to focus in on and refine the character strengths that make you unique and allow you to achieve things far greater than you may have imagined. We can help you examine your strengths, personality traits, core values, gifts, talents, abilities, and integrate those elements into a holistic approach to life that will yield greater personal, relational, emotional, professional, and spiritual satisfaction. You and your therapist will become a team whose sole purpose will be to maximize your full potential and help you excel at being the most important thing that you can be, YOU!
Is therapy right for me?
Seeking out therapy is an individual choice. There are many reasons why people come to therapy. Sometimes it is to deal with long-standing psychological issues, or problems with anxiety or depression. Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in one's life such as a divorce or work transition. Many seek the advice of counsel as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a therapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges. Therapy can help address many types of issues including depression, anxiety, conflict, grief, stress management, body-image issues, and general life transitions. Therapy is right for anyone who is interested in getting the most out of their life by taking responsibility, creating greater self-awareness, and working towards change in their lives.
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.
How can therapy help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in psychotherapy. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from therapy depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
- Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
- Developing skills for improving your relationships
- Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
- Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
- Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
- Improving communications and listening skills
- Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
- Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
- Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
Therapy sounds kind of scary to me. Is this feeling normal?
Many of our clients tell us that the most surprising thing about therapy is that it is not nearly as scary a proposition as they felt that it would be before they began the process. Overcoming the unknown is the first step to alleviating those fears. Many clients, after completing the first session, cannot wait to come back and begin the real work of resolving issues. Initial reluctance is very common but also very easy to overcome once you realize that many of the people that you come into contact with have, at one time or another, seen a counselor.
What are the therapy sessions like?
Every therapy session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for therapists to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during therapy sessions. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts around fifty minutes. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. There may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. It is important process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For therapy to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions. People seeking psychotherapy are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of therapy:
- Compassion, respect and understanding
- Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
- Real strategies for enacting positive change
- Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance
Is medication a substitute for therapy?
In some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you. It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness.
Do you accept insurance?
At this time Milestone Counseling is an in network provider for CMS Ped-I-Care, and is approved to provide services for Medipass clients on a case by case basis. Milestone is also able to receive payments from most HSA's (Health Savings Accounts)
Please Note: Most insurance companies will compromise your diagnosis and sell that information to a national database that is accessible to other insurance companies. Most of these companies include that release through the contract to provide coverage you signed when you purchased a policy with them. Insurance companies use this information to increase rates for individuals with particular diagnoses. For example, A car insurance company may periodically review its insured clients through this database and increase their rates if their insureds have a particular diagnoses such as Major Depressive Disorder or Bipolar Disorder. The only way to truly protect the confidentiality of your mental health information is to pay out of pocket for services.
Is therapy confidential?
In general, the law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.
However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:
- Suspected child abuse or dependent adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
- If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. The therapist is required to notify the police.
- If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.