Counseling and Therapy
Counseling and therapy involves a series of clinical sessions to help the client better understand their personal and interpersonal dynamics, explore the underlying causes, and develop corrective or coping strategies and skills. The “client” might be an individual, a couple, a family, an extended family, or any other group. My practice is focused on families (as opposed to individuals) and adults (as opposed to children). I work primarily with adults, with special attention to the needs of children. In this capacity I offer a wide range of services including pre-marital counseling, family therapy (with or without the children), couples counseling (such as to help decide whether to go forward with a divorce or try to save the marriage), pre-divorce counseling (such as when they have made the decision to seek the divorce, but would like to proceed responsibly), and even multi-family therapy.
It is my strong belief that the adults hold the keys to success or failure in the family. If the parents are not working effectively, whether together or separated, it makes no sense to send the children to therapy, other than to simply provide a place for them to get some support to offset the toxicity at home. Even if the children do have their own therapeutic needs, no child therapist will be able to accurately diagnose or treat so long as there is parental dysfunction. Therefore, the first step is always to treat the parents and then determine how or whether to treat the children.
Family therapy typically involves weekly or bi-weekly meetings lasting about an hour and a half. I normally start with the parents and then decide whether to include other adults or the children. If it appears that the children need their own therapy, I will refer that out to child specialists and then coordinate the parental work with that of the children.
The cost is just the hourly cost plus any costs of consulting with other professionals. Family therapy is usually billed monthly and does not involve a retainer unless I have problems with payments. Family therapy usually lasts from a few weeks to a few months.