I am used to handling everything on my own and never asking for help. Am I weak for seeking therapy?
Not at all. You already have some strengths that you’ve used before, and for whatever reason, they aren’t working right now. Perhaps a certain problem feels overwhelming. In your work together, Bonnie will help you identify what your strengths are and how to implement them in your current struggles. People who ask for help know when they need it and have the ability to reach out. Everyone needs help now and then!
Can I just talk to a friend or family member? What is so special about a counselor?
A mental health professional is specially trained help you approach your situation objectively. They can teach you new skills, gain different perspectives, listen to you without judgment or expectation, and help you listen to yourself. Furthermore, therapy is completely confidential. You never have to worry about others “knowing your business.”
Can I just take medication?
Medication alone cannot solve all issues; instead, it treats the symptoms. Therapy is designed to explore the root of the issue, dig deep into your behavior and teach you strategies to accomplish your personal and/or relational goals. Sometimes however, medication can be effective and is needed in conjunction with therapy.
What are the sessions like? What do I have to do?
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. Bonnie tailors her therapeutic approach to your specific needs.
Overall, counseling is a process in which you and a counselor, like Bonnie, develop an understanding and trusting relationship with one another. The two of you will work as a team to explore and define present life problems, develop future goals for an improved life, and work in a systematic fashion towards those goals.
How many sessions should I expect?
This can depend on several factors. Each person’s circumstances are unique, and the length of time it takes to accomplish your goals depends on your desire for personal development, your commitment, and the factors that are driving you to seek therapy in the first place.
What can I do to get the most out of therapy?
Ultimately, therapy exists for you! You will have a session with a counselor only once a week, which means your active participation and dedication the rest of the week is crucial to your success. It’s the work you do outside of sessions that will really help you see your personal growth and development.
My partner and I are having problems. Should we seek individual counseling or come together?
If both partners are willing, Bonnie would initially work with both of you together. After this, it is possible to continue in individual sessions. However, it is not helpful to begin with an individual session and transition to couple’s work, as the trust between your therapist and partner will not match your own trust with the therapist.