f.a.q.

WHAT IS A MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPIST?

  • A Marriage and Family Therapist has a Master's degree in MFT. Licensure as an MFT includes the degree plus 3,000 hours of supervised experience providing individual, couple/family, and child therapy. 

  • MFT's are trained in relationships. MFT's are not just going to treat an individual as if that person lives in a vacuum. An MFT is going to help that person relate better and improve relationships, including the one with themselves. 

  • MFT's cannot prescribe medication. You can be referred to a psychiatrist for medication. MFT's often work closely with psychiatrists, and can help you with a referral.

WHAT CAN I EXPECT FROM THERAPY?

I work from an Attachment Theory perspective. With that, you can expect:

  • to have searching conversations about the patterns in your life,

  • about your relationship with your parents and your early experiences shaped how you see the world now.

  • I aim to empower you to change your patterns by becoming aware of them, and making a conscious choice.

  • Sessions will have plenty of space for you to talk and explore, while I will be offering feedback, asking questions designed to help you gain insight,

  • We will spend time processing your emotions. 

  • Sometimes I will provide psycho-education to certain issues to help you understand from a psychological viewpoint

  • I also provide some education about unhealthy relationships if it applies

Sessions have an open, free flowing format with you having much of the control over what we cover. But, I do offer a more structured approach for those situations when it is called for.

HOW LONG SHOULD I COMMIT TO BEING IN THERAPY?

 I understand wanting to know what you are in for. But, the answer is dependent on many factors:

  • What do you want to get out of therapy?

  • Have you been in therapy before?

  • What experiences have come before this?

  • Do you have a strong, healthy basis for coping?

  • Do you have a good support system?

  • How long do you want to be in therapy?

Therapy is a commitment to yourself. You get out of it what you put into it. Your therapist cannot fix you or do the changing for you. So, the best way to maximize your returns is to be an active participant. 

I find that, typically, a good initial commitment to make is 6 months-1 year. Many people find that time frame gives them the gains they want, and are comfortable knowing they can always come back if need be. 

HOW DO I CHOOSE A THERAPIST? I WANT THE RIGHT FIT. 

Research shows that the most benefits in therapy comes from the therapeutic relationship. That connection between the therapist and the client is where a lot of healing is done as the client gets a new experience in a relationship that they can fully be themselves, feel heard, trust, and know what to expect from the other person. If we think about it this way, than the best advice for finding a therapist is to look for someone you connect with. Think about how you feel when you are in the room with that person.

  • Do you feel safe? Are you comfortable being yourself?

  • Do you feel like the therapist is listening and validating your experience?

  • Does the therapist's style of relating resonate with you?

  • Do you feel respected?

  • Do you like the therapist?

A good therapist should not tell you what to do, but should instead offer guidance and feedback, respecting your right to self-determination. If a therapist, "has all the answers", is too pushy, or does not respect your boundaries, this is a red flag.  

And yes, training and education is important too. Feel free to ask your therapist questions about their qualifications to make an informed decision. 

DO YOU TAKE INSURANCE?

I do not accept insurance. I have made this decision, and would like to provide you with some information so you too can make an informed decision about using your insurance to pay for therapy services, or not.

 it is important that you know the following information:

  • Your insurance company will require a mental health diagnosis, which will become permanent on your medical records. This not only compromises your privacy and confidentiality, it may effect your future eligibility and cost if you wish to make a change in your insurance.

  •  Your insurance company will allow a limited number of sessions for you, usually 4-8. This may or may not be a sufficient amount of sessions, depending on your goals and what is bringing you to therapy. Typically, I find that this is not enough time to get real, deep work done. 

Paying out of pocket gives you more control over your therapeutic process, and importantly, over your medical records. 

IT SEEMS LIKE THERAPY COSTS A LOT...IS IT WORTH IT?

Short answer: YES!

We are taught in our culture to under-value mental health, and therefore therapy. This is part of the reason people balk at the cost of therapy, although they might happily pay more for the dentist or the doctor, or even massage therapy.

 

Therapy is an investment in your future and your mental health. Therapy has improved many people's self-esteem, lowered difficult-to-live with symptoms such as anxiety and depressed mood, helped people find greater peace, and saved marriages and improved relationships. 

That being said, therapists are not out to swindle you, and are not becoming wealthy off of providing these services. It is tough work that involves using one's heart, intellect, intuition and even body. All of us goes into this work. You are getting all of this, and the vast experience and education of someone who has dedicated themselves to helping improve people's mental health and relationships. You are getting heart and science, as the efficacy of therapy has been shown in research. Therapy can help, and a lot of people believe it is worth it. You must make this decision for yourself. 

Genevieve Fahey Psychotherapy

(530) 755-6776

  • Instagram
  • Instagram