What happens when I first meet you?
During the first meeting, I’ll gather information about you. We’ll get to know each other and build trust. If you’re uneasy about it, that’s normal. You’ll tell your story and identify what you want to work on and we’ll create a plan of action.
What if I am uncomfortable talking to a stranger about my personal life?
The therapist/client relationship is unique. You’ve got nothing to prove to me. That makes it helpful to be able to talk about yourself and what you’re going through without the input of a family member, friend, or other person. You will be able to talk about things at a deeper level than you are probably used to.
It’s also unique in that it’s very up close and personal but very distant at the same time.
The therapeutic relationship is very freeing. It allows you to be yourself without any concern about judgment. It provides you with a fresh, empowering perspective.
Does counseling mean I’m weak?
No. Like professional athletes, counseling is like coaching. Going to counseling means you’re having normal reactions to life’s events. It can be a current or past event that needs to be worked on. Receiving counseling is a sign of assertiveness, of taking control. It’s getting clarity and a better understanding of yourself, your situation and ways to address your challenge. It’s about taking charge of your life. Therapy give you tools, insight and direction to achieving your goals.
Am I mentally ill if I need counseling?
No. A diagnosis is a description of symptoms, not an illness. If you want to submit your claim to your insurance, you would need a diagnosis. There are other risks involved in using insurance. That’s the next question.
Will my insurance pay for my counseling?
That depends on your insurance plan coverage details. The majority of men who see me do not use their insurance. I can provide you with a copy of your bill for you to submit to your insurance company for possible reimbursement. Often, a man’s insurance policy has a high deductible and he will still pay out-of-pocket until he meets it and then insurance will assist. (This is the type of insurance I have.)
Having a mental disorder diagnosis listed with your insurance company follows you throughout your life and makes it hard to get additional insurance coverage. I want to help you, not to possibly cause you problems later because of a “mental disorder diagnosis”.
Currently, I do not work with any insurance companies. But I can provide you with a receipt if you want to submit it to your insurance company for reimbursement.
If you want a definite answer about how your insurance company handles an out-of-network visit, call you insurance company and ask them this question: “What do you reimburse for out-of-network mental health benefits?” Answers will vary based upon insurance company and the insurance plan you have.
Why would I see you if I have insurance?
The men who choose to see me and not use their insurance do so for important reasons:
- They found an advocate to file their out-of-network insurance claims: Check This Out!
- They have worked out with their accountant to write off their sessions with me as coaching, education or training, so they get the tax write-off.
- They don’t want their insurance to be notified they are in counseling.
- They don’t want a formal mental disorder diagnosis.
- They want to see me in private because they don’t want their spouse or employer to know.
- They want to completely control their mental health records and don’t want them online.
- They use their Flexible Spending Account or Health Savings Account and want to use tax-free funds.
- They want to see a professional that specializes in working with men
- They don’t like the therapists on their insurance panel
- They don’t like being confined to who their insurance company tells them they can see
- Their insurance plan reimburses them a certain amount for out-of-pocket/out-of-network mental health visits
How much information do I need to tell you?
By law, everything discussed in session is held in strict confidence to protect your privacy. This encourages openness and honesty allowing us to work together on problems, identify opportunities and your personal strengths. It helps me understand you better. Exceptions to confidentiality are when you intend to hurt yourself, another or if there is child abuse.
How many times do I need to see you?
Each man’s situation is different. Most see me bi-weekly. Most men see me for between 2 to 5 sessions. As each man’s progress is different, we can discuss your situation and plan accordingly. Therapy is about getting you out of therapy as quickly and effectively as possible.
How do you do therapy?
My sessions are 60 minutes. I use the most current treatment methods and will discuss each with you. We’ll identify the approach you’re comfortable with, having the most potential for results. Each time we meet, I do a brief outcome measure to gauge your progress since our last meeting. You will identify what you want to address at the start of each session. At the end of each session, I’ll get feedback from you to rate the quality of our work , whether what we are doing is on target with what you want to accomplish and make any necessary adjustments. The intention is to make sure you are receiving the service you want, to make sure you are heard and respected. I’ll make sure my approach meets your expectations and is customized to your specific situation.
Why should I choose you over other therapists?
I can only speak for my service and Texas Men’s Therapy. I do not compare myself to competitors simply because I don’t see them as competitors. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way, I simply serve a specific, exclusive audience. I stand by different values. This is not to say that my competitor’s values are bad, they’re just different. I focus exclusively on men and that has provided me with specialized knowledge, experience and skill that men find effective.
Why do you work only with men?
I do my best work with men. When a man chooses to see me, he does so for various reasons:
- He feels more comfortable talking to a male instead of a female.
- He believes another man can understand his problems better.
He likes the masculine environment just like women like the female environment.
- He may not be comfortable sharing personal information with a female therapist.
- He may have mom issues and a female trying to help does not suit him.
- He had an absent father and working with another man gives him the opportunity to develop that aspect of himself
- He believes another man’s perspective is best for his situation.
- He’s had a bad experience with a female therapist.
- He finds it hard to trust women.
- He believes a male facilitator is best for the conversation he wants to have.
- He’s more comfortable talking to a male therapist about his sexual problems.
- He thinks men are better problem-solvers than women.
How soon will I get results?
Every man is different, as are his results. Every situation is different but results depend largely on how committed you are to solving your problem and using what you learn. It’s common for my clients to realize improvement after one session. More challenging problems require more time. I’ll get you out of therapy as soon as possible but I’ll give your situation the attention it requires.