COUNSELING SERVICES

Introduction

As a counselor I have worked with children individually and in groups assisting them with social skills development, building self-esteem, fostering collaborative problem-solving to resolve conflicts, and assisting in their coping with traumatic issues like divorce and grieving. I can provide consultation and training to parents on how to manage behaviors and communicate more effectively with children.


Therapy Requires Effort

Psychotherapy and counseling are not easily described in general statements. They vary depending on the personality of the counselor and client, and on the particular problem presented. There are many methods I may use to deal with the problems that you hope to address. Counseling and therapy are not like a medical doctor visit. Instead, they call for a very active effort on your or your child’s part. In order for the therapy to be most successful, you or your child will have to work on the issues we talk about during our sessions and at home.


Educational and Emotional Needs Overlap

I have found that educational and emotional needs often overlap in children, so both of these needs must be considered. For example, emotional issues may keep a child from being able to concentrate in school. On the other hand, behavior problems and sadness can be caused by school failure resulting from an undiagnosed learning problem.


Benefits and Risks

Counseling can have benefits and risks. Since therapy often involves discussing unpleasant aspects of one’s life, the patient may temporarily experience uncomfortable feelings such as frustration, loneliness, and helplessness. On the other hand, therapy has also been shown to have many benefits. It often leads to better relationships, solutions to specific problems, and significant reductions in feelings of distress. But there are no guarantees of what you or your child will experience.


Disclosures

As a general rule I will provide information about your child only to you. If you request, I can also report information to your child’s doctor or teachers. There are exceptions to this rule. I will also disclose to others what you or your child has told me under the following circumstances:

• When I have reason to believe that a child or developmentally disabled person has suffered from abuse or neglect,
• When reasonably necessary to prevent harm to you, your child, or another person, or
• When ordered by a court to disclose information.


Treatment Plan

My approach to counseling is geared specifically to your child’s needs. After I evaluate your child’s needs over the first few sessions, I will be able to offer you or your child an idea of what our work may include and a treatment plan to guide our efforts. You should evaluate this information along with your own opinions of whether you feel comfortable working with me.


Ask Questions

As a consumer of counseling services, you should make a careful choice of counselors, since counseling is a significant commitment. If you have questions about my procedures, we should discuss them whenever they arise. If your doubts persist, I will be happy to help you set up a meeting with another mental health professional for a second opinion.


Professional Consultation

It is my practice to meet from time to time with other professionals for case consultations. The aim of these consultations is to obtain ideas or insight from other professionals. Although I might discuss certain aspects of your child’s case during these consultations, I would not reveal your name, your child’s name, or anything else that would allow you or your child to be identified.

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