Your treatment here and your status as a client are confidential within all applicable state and federal guidelines which means that we cannot disclose any information about you except under certain legally prescribed situations. During your initial complimentary visit, we will review these guidelines, explain (in detail) the circumstances under which confidentiality can be “broken” and answer any questions you may have.
Some questions parents may ask themselves when considering counseling for their child:
- Do I think this behavior is typical for my son/daughter’s age?
- How frequently does this concern occur?
- Has anything I’ve tried so far worked and to what degree?
- Are you feeling stuck…and don’t know what else to do?
- Is my child endangering himself/herself or threatening harm?
- Are disagreements about how to handle your child’s problems putting a strain on your marriage or partnership?
When parents notice that their son or daughter is unable to function well on a daily basis, or if their child’s behavior is interfering with the family’s functioning, it may be time to reach out for help.
Once parents decide to seek counseling for their child, they are encouraged to paint counseling in a positive light – a way to help them manage emotions, and cope with difficult situations.
It is never advisable for parents to use counseling as a punishment for behaviors.
If children have a positive experience with counseling, they will be more likely to reach out for help in the future.
PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, is an anxiety problem that develops in some people after extremely traumatic events, such as combat, crime, an accident or natural disaster.
People with PTSD may relive the event via intrusive memories, flashbacks and nightmares; avoid anything that reminds them of the trauma; and have anxious feelings they didn’t have before that are so intense their lives are disrupted. (American Psychological Association)
If you or someone you care about has gone through a traumatic event and are experiencing any of the following symptoms, it may be time to reach out for professional help.
- Difficulty sleeping, which may include trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or experiencing frequent nightmares.
- Feeling irritable and experiencing frequent anger outbursts that are difficult to control.
- Increased conflict with others, withdrawal from relationships, and decreased trust and intimacy.
- Constantly feeling on guard and hypervigilant, and having difficulty relaxing and “unwinding.”
- Experiencing highly distressing and repetitive thoughts and memories of the event.
- Intense feelings of fear or impending doom even when no danger is present – feeling as though it’s impossible to ever feel safe again.
- Going to great lengths to avoid reminders of the event.
- Depressed mood, hopelessness, and a loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities – isolating and giving up hobbies.
- Deteriorating work performance due to difficulty concentrating, or lack of sleep.
- Disconnected from others and feeling numb.
- Drinking alcohol or using drugs to cope with their symptoms.
- Active or passive thoughts of suicide.
Most of us face struggles at some point in our lives. These struggles may include stress at home, work, or school.
Sometimes we may struggle with low self-esteem, anxious or depressed moods, negative thoughts, destructive behaviors like drinking excessively and/or uncontrolled fear and worry.
Many times, our struggles in life can be eased by practicing good self-care and seeking social support from family and friends.
However, if you notice that your usual ways of coping are no longer helpful, you may want to consider seeking the help of a qualified Mental Health Professional.
HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER:
- Do you spend a considerable amount of time every week thinking about the problem?
- Is the problem embarrassing, to the point that you want to hide from others?
- Has the problem reduced your quality of life?
- Has the problem impacted your work or school goals?
- Do you have medically unexplainable physical symptoms (low energy, headaches, upset stomach, aches & pains, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, sleeping problems, etc.)?
- Do you feel like you can’t control your emotions?
- Are you bottling everything up inside?
- Do you genuinely feel unhappy with your life?
- Do you have frequent triggers that “set you off”?
- Have you experienced panic attacks?
- Do you feel you are a danger to yourself or others?
A “yes” response to any of these questions suggests that it’s time to reach out for professional counseling or therapy.
You don’t need to continue to struggle with a problem that is upsetting and/or getting in the way of other parts of your life. Professional help is available, all you have to do is reach out.
What is the difference between Counseling and Therapy?
Counseling is usually more short-term than therapy and focuses on a more narrow range of issues.
Therapy is more long-term and focuses on a broader range of issues such as exploring your feelings, beliefs, or behaviors, working through challenging or influential memories, identifying aspects of your life that you would like to change, better understanding yourself and others, setting personal goals, and working toward desired change.
Whether it is counseling or therapy, in either case you will work one-on-one with a trained therapist—in a safe, caring, and confidential environment.
When a person decides to see a counselor, they are usually having difficulty coping with negative thoughts, intense emotions or they are struggling with a major life transition.
Counseling can help you COPE WELL and LIVE BETTER. Counselors may view people as being stuck, in need of new skills, or in need of growth, but they never view people as having something “wrong” with them.
MYTH: Seeking counseling is a sign of weakness.
TRUTH: Reaching out for help is courageous and a sign of STRENGTH.
At first it may start as a “gut feeling”, that something just doesn’t seem right in your family. Perhaps your family has been resilient in the past and you think this situation will “blow over” soon.
But as time goes by you realize that it’s only getting worse. If your family is experiencing any of the following situations, it may be time to reach out to a qualified mental health professional:
- Extreme emotional reactions
- Problems at work or school
- Increased irritability and arguments
- A breakdown in communication
- Withdrawing from each other
- Violence or the threat of violence
- A pervasive sense of helplessness or hopelessness
- A traumatic experience (death, illness, divorce, etc.)
- Substance abuse problems