The decision to see a therapist is personal. It is similar to seeing any other medical provider; there can be some important differences for you to be aware of.
6 Most Frequently Asked Questions
1) What can I expect from therapy?
Once you have made a decision to see a therapist, you still might be apprehensive about the process. It’s common to feel nervous prior to your first appointment. Therapy is having an unbiased objective person listen to you, allow you to feel heard, and help you make sense of what can sometimes feel like chaos. Therapists are not advice givers. Rather, we walk with you on your journey and help you see landmines you may have missed otherwise. You can expect to be respected. You can expect opinions and suggestions from time to time but you are never told what to do.
2) What happens during the first session?
To an outsider, or at first glance, it may appear the first session is a casual conversation. Essentially, that’s what it is. The therapist gets to know you, asks background questions, and starts the journey. What is your story? What are you goals? What changes do you want to make? (If you don’t know the answer to these questions that is okay, too.)
Another important aspect of the first session is deciding if you feel the therapist is a good fit for you.
3) How long do appointments last?
Appointments are 50 minutes. This is the standard length of a counseling session.
4) How often will we meet?
Initially, most visits are weekly. It’s important to gain some momentum in the beginning by meeting weekly or progress can stall out. Once some or all of your goals are met, meeting less often will make sense.
5) Does my health insurance cover my sessions?
Most likely, yes. At Tracy Riley Counseling, we are in network with the following insurance providers:
- Florida Blue (Blue Cross and Blue Shield)
- United Healthcare
Each plan is different, even for those who work in the same company. Your benefits are individualized for you. We can verify your insurance and get our best estimate of what your costs will be, if any. We will need information from you to verify your specific benefits.
Many companies offer Employee Assistance Programs. This will allow you to have 1-10 sessions at no cost to you. Check with your employer for those benefits. We are in network with most EAPs in the local Jacksonville area.
6) How Does Confidentiality Work?
We are bound by ethical and legal requirements to keep your secrets safe. All of them!
There are certain exceptions to confidentiality.
If we suspect you are a threat to yourself or someone around. If a therapist believes that you are in imminent danger of hurting yourself or someone else, a family member, police or ambulance will be called to ensure safety.
If we suspect child abuse or domestic violence. Therapists are mandated reporters and we are legally and ethically required to report our suspicions.
If we receive a signed court order from a Judge. We do not provide records, based on an attorney’s request, even if you signed an authorization.