Frequently Asked Questions

What To Expect

Commonly Asked Question & Answers For Getting Started!

Do you offer a phone consultation?


Yes! The first time we speak with someone, it is typically for a free 15-20 minute initial consultation. We offer the free initial consultation to all potential clients because we believe that it is important for you to choose who you want to work with when you start this process. This allows you to ask any questions you may have about engaging in the counseling process and/or what to expect. There's no obligation just for picking up the phone (or shooting an email)!




How does this whole distance counseling thing work?


This is for clients where in-office or in-home therapy is not an option, we offer online therapy, via our Simple Practice EHR, Doxy.Me or VSee, a HIPAA-compliant secure video application. Online Therapy allows for therapy to continue during times the client or therapist are out of town, when clients are experiencing transportation problems or for clients located outside of the Raleigh/Durham/Cary area. Online Therapy provides a convenient way to stay on track with the goals that you want to achieve in therapy. Once an appointment time is booked, we conduct online therapy just as we would in the office. All you need is a webcam (and potentially a VSEE account). You must also have a credit card on file to remit payment. While we believe that in person therapy should always be considered as the first option, online therapy may be a good option for some clients. If you think Online Therapy may be right for you, talk to your therapist and let them know you would prefer online therapy. If you need help setting up a VSee account feel free to send an e-mail and we will provide you with detailed instructions.




WIll I have to take medication?


We do not prescribe medication. We are not licensed appropriately to do so. We prefer to take a more holistic approach to your emotional and wellness needs and to not necessarily make that as a first recommendation. However, this does vary on a case by case basis. Some people want to take medication right away while others refuse to take anything unless they are in absolute crisis. We can talk about your options and make recommendations. We do collaborate with psychiatrists in the community and can provide you with their contact information.




Do I have to obtain a diagnosis?


Not Necessarily. I typically refrain from addressing client's issues with a diagnosis due to the stigma and identification that one may associate with titles and the impact that has upon treatment. When applicable it is my goal to provide the least restrictive, yet accurate diagnosis. However, I am trained and utilize the DSM-V to make a clinical diagnosis. It is generally important for clients to understand that if you choose to use insurance, it is necessary for a diagnosis to be given in order for claims to be serviced. In the event of a claims appeal from your insurance company, they may also request treatment plans or summaries and/or your entire medical record. This information, including the diagnosis would become part of the client's permanent record. As my client you have the right to be informed of any diagnosis or reports being made and I will do my best to explain all procedure to you.




What is your availability like?


Typically I see clients on Tues/Wed/Thurs ranging from 11am to 7pm depending on the day of the week. I do base my schedule on client availability when possible and at times will also see clients via distance session on Fridays during the day as well.




Do you participate in an EAP (Employee Assistance Programs)?


Yes. Currently some of our providers participate in First Sun EAP based out of Columbia, SC. However, We are open to participating in other networks. If you are in need of a provider in the area feel free to contact us or make the referral to your company's EAP program.




I see that you take insurance, but you're not in my network...


I am considered "out of network" for most insurance plans this time - however I am able to provide you with invoices or a "superbill" in order for you to claim your services and get reimbursed. This will occur with upfront payments at an out-of-pocket rate. Your insurance will be able to let you know your reimburseent rate based on what your specific insurance plan covers if you wish to use that option. I am only in network with BCBS. Outside of that I am able to do Self-Pay and/or see if you qualify for a sliding scale fee.




Do you offer a sliding scale fee?


Yes, we do. We strongly believe in making excellent mental health care available. Our sliding fee scale allows us to meet these needs while practicing ethically. Please ask about the sliding scale when calling to make an appointment. Note*** There are a select amount of spots available for this option. You will be asked to re-evaluate your needs based on any income based changes you report in session such as change of job and/or enrolling in insurance and this will be done on a 6 month-yearly basis as well.




Can I still receive counseling if I don't want to be diagnosed?


Absolutely! The only time a diagnosis is "officially" required is if you are using your insurance. Insurance only covers with a diagnosis code. Any other issues not related to a mental health disorder meeting criteria in the DSM-V would be covered under an out of pocket rate and can cover a multitude of issues related to simply seeking coaching/assistance in dealing with your day to day rather than specific issues and looking for personal growth to familial struggles and marital/couples counseling.




How long will treatment last?


The length of therapy depends on the type and severity of your symptoms as well as your life situation, beliefs, values, and expectations. Since you are provided with tools and information right away, you can experience short term symptoms relief while working toward long term results and change. Many patients start to experience symptom relief after 6 to 8 sessions. Keep in mind, not everything can be solved overnight. It is a Process. Therapy follows along with the saying, "you get out of it what you put in". If you're willing to put in effort outside of the therapy session, as well as inside, you'll typically start to see improvements at a faster rate.




What if I don't know that you'll be the right therapist for me?


That's ok! Not everyone is going to be a good fit. This might work in either direction. If you don't feel that we're a good match after we get started, just let us know! We'll help problem solve what your needs may be (nothing taken personally) and help refer you in the right direction! (We've descriibed to clients that at times finding the right therapy can feel like sort of like dating, it can frustrating finding the right one but once you do - you know you connect. Sometimes this happens for people in the first session and others take an average of 4 sessions to get a good feel for therapeutic rapport.) We also note: you'll find that we use appropriate self disclosure during session to allow you to experience being able to relate to your therapist on a basis of transparency in enhancing authentic therapeutic alliance, the most important factor in predicting clinical outcome.




What happens at our first appointment?


We will take a portion of the session going over the legal documents (Informed Consent & Professional Disclosure Statement) and thoroughly explain the counseling relationship and what you can expect from us. Based on your previous counseling experience sometimes that takes a short time or a longer one depending on what questions you have. Then we’ll work to build rapport while I learn more about you so that we can help prioritize how we can be of help.





10520 Little Brier Creek Lane Ste 205

Raleigh, NC 27617

Tel: 984-244-2111

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