Frequently Asked Questions

How long does therapy last, and how often do I need to come?
The duration of therapy varies from person to person and is influenced by the presenting concerns, effort made in between sessions, and the client(s) desired outcome. It works best to start with weekly appointments. This is essential to build a good rapport that will help us to achieve your desired outcomes. Once we feel that progress has been made or your symptoms have improved, we can reduce appointments to biweekly, monthly, or on an as needed basis.
Do you do couples counseling?
Yes! I provide both couples and individual counseling.
What if my partner is unavailable or unwilling to come? What if I want to speak to you first? Can we do couples therapy later?
Yes, you may choose to pursue individual therapy for couples concerns or opt to bring your partner into session at a later time. I have had success working with clients who wish to address relationship issues in individual therapy as well as self-esteem, anxiety, and depression as it impacts their current relationship.
 
At times, a spouse or partner may want to attend a session or see me to process thoughts and feelings on their own. It is important to understand how including your partner in therapy may impact your privacy and we will discuss my policy on confidentiality and third-party disclosure if this becomes necessary.
What if we are already seeing a couples (or individual) therapist?
If you are currently working with another therapist, I will make every effort to communicate or collaborate with them to ensure consistency.
I’m not sure I’m ready to start treatment. How can therapy help me?
Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies that are different from talking to a friend or family member. They can provide a non-biased, educated perspective on a difficult problem you may have or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you get from therapy depend on how much you put into the process and practice what you learn. Some of the benefits of therapy include:
 
  • Attaining a better understanding of yourself and values
  • Developing skills to improve your relationships
  • Finding resolutions to the issues or concerns that led you to seek help
  • Learning better methods to cope with stress and anxiety
  • Learning new skills to address anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
  • Cultivating communications and listening skills
  • Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
  • Discovering new ways to solve problems with your family, partner, or work
  • Improving your self-esteem and boosting your self-confidence
How does it work? What do I do in sessions?
My therapeutic approach is based on your specific needs; therefore no two sessions are alike. In general, you can expect to discuss the current happenings in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) since your last therapy session. There may be times that I utilize exercises, books, and other resources in our session and have you work on these skills outside of therapy.
How can I get the most out of therapy?
It is important to understand that you will get quicker and more significant results from therapy if you actively participate in and commit to the process. This includes taking chances, being open, showing up on time, attending sessions regularly, doing the homework and being patient as you allow the process to work. It takes months to unlearn a bad habit. Imagine how many years you’ve spent developing some of the relationship dynamics, insecurities, or negative self-talk that may be keeping you from reaching your goals. Beyond the work you do in your therapy sessions, I am an advocate for using techniques and sometimes doing homework outside of our sessions together. Since our session can seem brief the fastest way to see a positive change is to start using these skills into your daily life.

What is Telehealth/telehealth?
 

Telehealth is a form of video conferencing allowing me provide services to people outside of the office, for example, in your home or workplace.

What does telehealth Require?

For your appointment, you will need to have access to a private place and a computer/tablet/smart phone with a camera and high speed internet. I will provide you with access to a secure HIPAA compliant videoconferencing software free of charge. All you have to do is be on your device and logged on at the time of your appointment.

Is Telehealth Secure? 

I use GoToMeeting is secure and HIPAA compliant. I will send you an email prior to the session with instructions on how to access the meeting which is quick and easy. GoToMeeting is HIPAA compliant in order to protect your privacy and confidentiality. On my end, I will be in my
private office.

Benefits of Telehealth

Telehealth provides benefits that may lead to better care. I understand it can be difficult to take time off from your busy schedule to come into my office. Online sessions can eliminate your commute time and making it easier on you.  For those who are usually seen in the office but are
sick or traveling, this form of counseling allows you to still keep your appointment without interruption.

 

What do I need to do/How do I access my telehealth appointment?

The main thing you need to do to prepare for a telehealth appointment is to ensure that you have a private space. You also want to make sure that the device you use has high speed internet and a camera. When you schedule an appointment, I will provide you with the HIPAA- compliant software you need to participate in your appointment. After you schedule an appointment you will be sent login information. Be “present” for your session as if you were in my office; turn off device notifications and minimize distractions

What are my responsibilities using telehealth?

There are a few responsibilities I ask of you during your telehealth session: the sessions will not be recorded by you or me without prior knowledge and consent; you will inform me if any other person can hear or see any part of our session before the session begins; and you are responsible for the configuration of any electronic equipment used on your computer which is used for telehealth and it is your responsibility to ensure the proper functioning of all electronic equipment before our session begins.

Will all of my appointments be online?

I offer both online and in-person appointments. If you prefer telehealth sessions only, you can get the counseling you need entirely online. However, if you want in-person sometimes, or all the time, you have the flexibility to do that as well.

Can my partner and I do couples therapy through telehealth?

Using online sessions for couples therapy works best when the couple is on the same device. I realize that it is not always possible and therefore we will make efforts to do what works best for everyone.

Check with your insurance carrier to verify that telehealth services are part of your benefit
package.

I am licensed in the state of Illinois and therefore can only provide therapy services to those who are physically in the same state. During the time of Covid-19 some state laws have changed allowing me to provide services to residents of other states (i.e. Missouri) however at this time, it is a temporary amendment and subject to change.

 

I believe that each one of us can be fulfilled in our lives. If you are ready to explore what is getting in your way and figure out what to do next; then give me a call at 217-223-4673 or email me at 223hope@gmail.com. I would be more than happy to talk or correspond via email prior to making an appointment to answer any questions.

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Office Hours:
Tuesday - Thursday
Last Appt. at 7pm

© 2020 Bartlow Counseling Center