Naturally, you may have some questions.
Here are answers to some of the questions we hear most often. Please call us with any other questions or concerns you may have. We’re here to help.
Great question! Many individuals have not had experience with therapy, and the first step—coming in—can be the hardest part. Even before coming in for your appointment, you will speak personally to a therapist of your choice. He or she will want to hear a little bit about what is causing you to seek therapy. You will then be given information on the intake process and the fee structure, and have an opportunity to ask any questions. An intake packet will be emailed to you that will also provide a lot of information about the procedures and privacy related to therapy. During your first session, you and the therapist will sit down and talk generally about the therapy process together. You’ll have an opportunity to ask questions, and your therapist will seek out more information to best identify your needs. Together, you will discuss goals for therapy and the best way to move forward with treatment.
You may be ready to come to therapy, but your partner or family member may still be unsure or may even refuse to come. This can be very common. It is often difficult for people to talk openly about their relationships with a stranger. People work hard to cover up their problems and often see therapy as “airing our dirty laundry.” At Equinox, we understand that each person may walk in with a very different expectation of therapy and how much he or she may want to participate. We encourage you to simply take the first step of coming in and meeting with one of our therapists to start the discussion. Sometimes, just getting in the door is the hardest part. But once that door is open and you experience the benefits of expert facilitation and guidance, the therapy process becomes fulfilling and extremely helpful.
Most office and home based sessions range from 50 minutes to 80 minutes, while adventure or community based therapy may be several hours to a full day depending on the activity and location. You and your therapist will work together to identify your course of treatment based on your goals. People may have very short term goals and require solution focused treatment lasting 8-12 weeks, while others seek out long term support for complex challenges. When we work with youth and teens, developing a rapport and the necessary trust in the therapeutic relationship can often take longer than with adults. As a result, we like to let parents know that it is rarely a short-term therapy process that can result in long-term change. Our therapists are always open to discussing length of treatment and progress toward your goals throughout the treatment process.
Equinox Counseling and Wellness Center does not accept insurance payment or offer financing. We do accept cash, check or credit cards (VISA®, MasterCard®, Discover, American Express®), but does accept insurance benefits. However, if your insurance company offers reimbursement for out-of-network benefits, we can provide you with any billing assistance you may need and a monthly statement of services. A limited number of therapy sessions are available for those experiencing financial hardship.
As your child becomes older, there are definitely the normal stages that present challenges for parents. There are the “terrible twos,” social issues in junior high, and the difficult “teen years” to name a few. Although these and other stages of development can be hard, it does not always mean therapy is needed. However, when your child’s behavior, attitude or mood starts to impact becomes his or her daily functioning (i.e. success at school, getting through meal times, positively building peer relationships, following structure and expectations at home) or creates significant problems within the family relationships, it may be time to consult with a therapist and see how to best identify the needs of your child. We would identify some of the concerning symptoms warranting a therapeutic assessment such as depression, anxiety, school problems, withdrawal, frequent temper tantrums, fighting, purposeful rule breaking behaviors, drug/alcohol issues, impulsive behaviors or distractibility that limits success, reporting of trauma/abuse, high conflict divorce, mood swings that affect relationships, poor self-esteem, and/or reckless and high risk behaviors.
Yes! We encourage you to still bring your child in to meet with one of our therapists. It is very common for kids/teens to feel anxious or labeled as “the one with the problem,” which can cause resistance to the treatment process. Our clinicians are experts at building rapport and joining with those youth that are withdrawn, oppositional, or unsure when they come for the first session. Most of the time, with an opportunity to have a voice around their concerns or gripes, kids and teens begin to open up. We also use games, artwork, outdoor adventure, and other avenues of engagement/intervention to successfully help your child connect to the treatment process. And finally, with our in-home interventions, it is possible that our therapist can come into the home if your child refuses to come to the office. In their home environment, it can often feel more comfortable and supportive, which can help your child open up. After an initial assessment, we can decide what will be the best approach.
We have worked for many years with adolescents who demonstrate out-of-control behaviors and create severe problems in the family environment. This can look like drug/alcohol use, aggression, extreme opposition, verbal and emotional abuse, refusing school, and having no motivation for change. Although residential care can be a good treatment option at times, we work with families to design and implement speciality programs to address extreme high risk behaviors while the child remains in the home. We understand the desperate and hopeless feeling of having a child disrupt a home so much that staying there becomes prohibitive. However, before this very expensive and not always successful alternative is considered, we encourage you to contact Equinox for a thorough assessment. If it is clinically indicated and admission criteria is met, we will work with you to specifically design an intensive therapeutic program based on the unique needs of your family. Please see information on Troubled Teens for more details and information about the admissions process for our Intensive Treatment Program.