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Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers below to some commonly asked questions about therapy and our counseling practice. For further information, please contact us.

What can I expect from therapy?Congratulations, you have taken the first step in trying to improve your life by getting this far.  Asking yourself if you need therapy is like asking yourself,  "Do I need a physical?"  Maybe not, but the fact that you are thinking about it means that there are some concerns that you would like addressed.People seek out therapy most often for anxiety, depression, relationships, adolescent child rearing and/or substance abuse. If you are at a point of seriously thinking of harming yourself or others you must seek help immediately by calling 911 or going to your local emergency room.What is psychotherapy?When you see your physician you may be given medication for a particular physical ailment.  Similarly, when seeing a therapist, you are seeking help with other issues in your life.  Unfortunately, in most cases medication is not going to satisfactorily address the root cause of your stress.  In psychotherapy you learn new coping skills and life strategies, gain insight and develop new levels of personal growth.It is not uncommon for individuals to get lost in their emotional forest, constantly struggling to find a way out.  In the counseling sessions, the therapist will help you find your path towards a healthier lifestyle.   Sessions can be individual or a combination of couple, family, and group.How long is a session?There are no stop watches in our office.  Each session lasts about 50 minutes but  could go a little longer if time permits.How long does one stay in therapy?There are no mandates in our practice.  Everyone is different, so the length of therapy differs by individual.  Usually, in the early stages, sessions are scheduled for once a week. After a while, as you are feeling more confident, sessions can be scheduled less often.  Our goal is to provide you with the coping tools you need to taper off treatment as soon as it is appropriate to do so.What can I expect on my first visit?Don't you just hate paperwork? Ugh! So do we. Unfortunately the downside of ensuring patient rights is the state-required paperwork that must be completed before the session begins. For your convenience, we have included most of the required paperwork on our website, so the forms can be printed out, completed, and brought to the office before the first session begins. If  not completed ahead of time, we suggest you arrive at the office about 20 minutes early.The first session is a time to get to know each other.  As such, we allow for up to 90 minutes for the first session, without any additional cost. At the end of the session, you and the therapist will know if this is going to be a "good fit." If not, the therapist will make a recommendation for another counselor.Do you specialize?Tom Dwyer, LPC, LCADC, CT is the main therapist in the office. Tom is a  board certified mental health Licensed Professional Counselor. He has significant experience in dealing with individuals and their loved ones affected by substance abuse. Quite often clients have what are known as co-occurring conditions, in which the individual has a mental health issue along with a substance abuse problem. Tom is a board certified Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor, which uniquely qualifies him to provide clients with this level of specialized therapy. Additionally, Tom is a certified thanatologist (a.k.a as grief and bereavement counselor) helping those who have experience a significant loss.  Tom’s life experience of 25+ years as a Wall Street and banking professional provides a well-rounded background that many of our clients appreciate. Can you help my adolescent child?Adolescence has always been a difficult time of life. Most teenagers lack maturity and coping skills, regardless of the generation. Today's adolescents face challenges that their parents did not. Social media, cyber bulling, a more powerful and greater variety of drugs, and more sexual exploitation are just some of the challenges society's children are forced to face and manage. For some adolescents, these stressors become overwhelming, which can lead to poor choices and family conflicts. Adolescents need to learn coping skills and structure.  We provide these tools while the family provides the structure.  It is important that the family becomes involved at some point in the therapy because family stressors are common and they need to be addressed for the benefit of the entire family, especially the adolescent.Do you accept insurance?We provide our clients with the proper receipts to file with their insurance company for out-of-network benefits. Clients should verify with their insurance company their out-of-network benefits before beginning therapy, so there are no surprises when therapy starts.Payment for service is due at the end of each session.  Payments can be made by check, major credit card, or cash.Is therapy confidential?The law protects the confidentially of the client-therapist relationship. Information from the sessions is not disclosed without prior written approval from the client. However there are three very important exceptions that all clients must understand. The exceptions are the following:1. Suspected child or elder care abuse. Therapist must report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.2. If the client threatens serious bodily harm to himself or herself or to another person.  This would include spreading contagious, life-threatening diseases. The therapist must report this to the police and the intended victim, as applicable.3. When the Courts order  privileged information to be disclosed. The therapist will try to obtain permission from the client or to limit the amount of information to be shared.How do I set up an appointment?To set up an appointment, please call the main office number at (908) 665-1000.

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