Fort Lauderdale Counseling Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Frequently Asked Questions About Counseling
Where is your office located?
We have two locations to serve you:
4901 NW 17th Way
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309
Conveniently located in the heart of Fort Lauderdale on Commercial Blvd. One mile west of I-95.
12381 South Cleveland Avenue
Fort Myers, FL 33907
Our Fort Myers location is on US 41, one mile north of Daniels Pkwy (North of the Bell Tower Shops) near College Pkwy. We are on the second floor of the Gorovoy Eye and Barry University building. Look for the five-story glass building.
What are your office hours?
We pride ourselves on working hours that are convenient for you. I look around at other offices and notice that everyone wants to work 9-5, but what about you and your work? Our office is open until 9pm to ensure that you don’t have another stressor in your life by having to leave work just to make our appointments. We are available for you after work, but our late afternoon and evening appointments are the most popular and fill up quickly. Call soon for your free consultation.
Why don't you accept insurance for counseling and therapy services?
Sadly there are so many reasons and none are about money. The reason we do not accept insurance is that insurance companies believe that our clients should fit specific treatment diagnoses, goals, and outcomes. After years of practicing with other agencies that accept insurance, we noticed that we would spend more time submitting documents and completing paperwork for insurance than we spent with you, the client.
This takes away from the time that you and our staff should be spending together. We do not agree with the model that insurance companies have of fitting every client into a diagnosis and letting them know how long before the “problem is fixed” as if we were repairing a car. We feel my clients deserve to be met where they are and NOT where the insurance companies want you to be.
Here, you are afforded complete confidentiality and privacy that is not allowed by insurance companies because they require that we diagnose you with a mental health condition in order for them to determine if you really need help. As if that is not enough, then they require that we justify that diagnosis for each session we have by providing them with notes on our services. We think it is wrong and insensitive to our clients to share our personal and emotional conversations with another agency for the sake of money. We refuse to do that out of dignity and respect for you.
By not billing insurance, no diagnosis is necessary. There will be no record of your services outside of our office that link your mental health history to your lifelong medical reports or associated with your social security number. This aids in having no potential restrictions or rejections later in life with seeking adoption, prescribed medications or treatments, and even acquiring insurance coverage itself.
By not billing insurance, you are also able to decide for yourself on the number of sessions you attend and when we are ready to stop services. In our practice, it is all about you and will never be about the insurance company.
How do I pay for counseling and therapy services?
We accept cash, check and all major credit/debit cards.
How often are sessions and how long do they last?
In general, sessions are 50 minutes and we meet once per week. If at first, you feel that one session per week is not enough time, we can certainly consider more frequent appointments. My 4 and 12-week program also allows you to use your sessions as you need them. That may be a great option if at first you feel the need for more than one session per week.
What should I expect in my first counseling session?
The first session is focused on getting to know each other and learning more about what your needs are. It is important to gather enough information to determine how I can best help you reach your goals.
We need enough time to talk about what brings you in and what needs you have. We know firsthand how terrible it feels to start a therapy session and before we can even finish our conversation, it is time to leave. This is why the first session is always structured to maximize the time and gather enough information for both of us to know if we are able to work with each other.
See, finding a therapist is easy. But finding the right therapist for yourself can be a challenge.
What if it's embarassing?
It is great that you would recognize that some things may be embarrassing. You are not alone. We can’t tell you how many of my clients have shared how difficult it was to make the first call and how after working together for a few weeks, they wish they had made the call sooner.
Anyone can sit here and tell you that you should feel safe and comfortable sharing what you are going through. But instead, we will tell you that like any other relationship, it takes time and trust to share some of the heartaches you are experiencing. Give us enough time to develop the relationship and follow your heart in how much you want to share. The experience will be life-changing.
Does my child have a right to confidentiality?
Everyone has a right to confidentiality. It takes a long time to build a relationship with a child, and we value every one of them very much. It is important for everyone to feel comfortable in sharing their thoughts and feelings openly and in a safe environment like our office.
We understand how as a parent, you have a need to know what is happening with your child – and you do have a right to know.
However, it is important that we respect your child’s expectation of privacy. This is how we do it. If your child shares something that affects their safety such as involvement with drugs or environments/situations that can cause them harm, you will know about it. Frequent meetings together will ensure that you know what we are actively working on at all times.
Do I have to lay on a couch?
I mean, you can, but it will make talking to each other quite challenging 🙂
Is your furniture comfortable?
Funny, but we have been in some offices that the couch was clearly from the 70s and had coffee stains that blended with the fabric. Thankfully, for you and for us, this is not the case. We’re not inviting you to sleep on the couch, but it can certainly accommodate you or your family very well 🙂
How does counseling work?
Counseling, also referred to as therapy, is your time and your opportunity to go through some of the things that you could not generally share with others. By the time most clients arrive for counseling, they have attempted to deal with the situation on their own for months or even years. Therapy is meant to be non-judgmental and tailored to your needs. It is comforting to be understood and have a safe place where you can be yourself.
What if I am still not sure if therapy is right for me?
A few of us have been in your shoes and asked ourselves the same question. In my case (Anthony), I was so desperate to find help that I took the first appointment that I could get with the first person that answered the phone. 7. Literally 7 counselors later I found the person that truly changed my life.
That is my hope for you. That it doesn’t take 7 for us to find each other.
We want to eliminate that experience for you by offering a free consultation. We will gather some information, share with you our approach, and answer any questions you may have before you come to meet with us. You have nothing to lose but 20 minutes of your time. Call us now. Let’s discuss what is holding you back from A Peaceful Mind.