If I had to live my life again, I'd make the same mistakes, only sooner.
~ Tallulah Bankhead
How long does this take? How often do we meet?
We can work together for as long – or as briefly – as you want. There is a good chance that you will feel some relief early on in therapy, but for lasting change to set in, it usually takes at least 3-4 months. Changing pervasive life or relationship patterns will likely take longer. After our first few sessions, we will have a better sense.
I recommend that we meet weekly. This way we can build the understanding and trust that make up a good working relationship. You may wrap up at any time and come back whenever you want.
How much will it cost?
When we talk on the phone, I can let you know my current rate. It changes over time, so I don't list it here. Also, in my intake paperwork, I will provide you a good faith estimate of the cost of working together over time.
Can I use my insurance?
If you have a PPO plan, you can use it to get out-of-network benefits. I can talk you through what that means to you. You also can contact your benefits administrator for a summary of your mental health benefits. I am not in-network for any HMO plans.
Will other people find out? Could someone hold this against me in the future?
Therapy is confidential. Unless someone is at significant risk and I need to act to keep them safe, I will keep our conversations strictly confidential. However, if you use insurance, the insurance company will get some basic information about our sessions. If that is a major concern, you might want to consider paying privately.
What about medication?
This, again, is a personal decision. Generally speaking, psychotherapy provides longer-term benefit than medication. For people who are in acute distress, a combination of the two is often recommended. If you want to try medications, I can recommend a psychiatrist. If you are currently under a doctor's care, we can discuss how to coordinate your care. If you are not sure, I can help you decide whether to seek a medication consultation with a psychiatrist.
Really, is it worth it?
Yes. Really. Therapy can help you make significant changes in your life, and the benefits often continue to accrue long after you leave. You only get one life. Most people find that therapy makes it a richer and happier one.
Are you the right therapist for me?
This is really the key question. Many people find that they can get a good sense of whether we will be a good fit from reading through my website or from talking with me on the phone. Give me a call at (510) 210-5352 or email me at DrTedObbard@gmail.com and we can talk a bit about your situation and how we would work together.