Frequently Asked Questions.....
How do I schedule an appointment?
At this time, the easiest way to schedule an appointment is to directly contact me via phone or use the contact form here
What will my first session be like?
It is perfectly normal to feel a certain degree of nervousness about starting therapy with someone new. We are all human and get nervous about meeting new people or trying new things.
That being said, the first therapy session is generally about introducing ourselves to each other. There are some forms to review about the mechanics of therapy such as reviewing confidentiality and your personal history. I will often ask questions about what issues or concerns bring you to therapy and the goals that you'd like to accomplish. Time permitting, I also like to give you something to practice before our next session such as a new coping skill.
If you want to prepare for this first session, you can spend some time thinking about what changes you want in your life and what you believe to be your problem areas. If you like, you can bring notes to help you remember.
How long will the process take?
Therapy is truly an experience that is unique to the person/persons in it so it is difficult to say how long it will take you to get the results you want. Some people stay in for a few days only, and some stay in therapy for years. The average, however, is about 8 sessions. I would ask that if you decide to start therapy with me, that you give yourself time to get comfortable with me and with the process which can take several sessions. Because of that, I would ask that you make the commitment to yourself to stay for at least 3 sessions.
Does Virtual Therapy Really Work?
Some of us have gotten really used to taking zoom meetings or to talking to family using FaceTime, while to others this remains something new and unknown. Either way, people are unsure if virtual therapy can be as helpful as regular face-to-face counseling.
Well, the good news is that virtual therapy has been shown to be as effective as traditional face-to-face! Outcomes are the same, and relationships are just as supportive and nurturing. Plus, the benefits of virtual therapy include no commute time, increased privacy, increased availability to rural areas, and for some, it's easier to share private information with someone online.
How does confidentiality Work?
I strictly follows the guidelines set out by the American Counseling Association and the State of Michigan. For the most part, this says that all information shared with your counselor is kept private and confidential unless you sign a written waiver. Exceptions to this rule include if you are thought to be a danger to yourself or to someone else, or if a court orders it. The counselor is also mandated by law to report any suspected child or elder abuse.
Notes will be taken during our sessions together and will not be shared without your express permission.
Will my health insurance cover therapy?
At this time, I am not able to accept any insurances, and am operating on self-pay basis only. The advantages to operating in this manner is that you and I are able to work on any goals that we feel are important AND we will be able to continue to do so for as long as WE believe it is still helpful. If I were to accept payment from an insurance company, we would be mandated to follow the dictates of that particular insurance company.
Upon request, I can provide you with a superbill to be presented to your insurance company for potential reimbursement. I have no way of predicting whether your insurance will in fact reimburse you. It may be a good idea to check with your individual insurance company prior to starting therapy with me if this is a concern for you. Also, if you want a superbill, please inform me before or at our first session so I can ensure this is done in a timely fashion.
What are the Advantages to Not Using Insurance?
There are many reasons why I choose to not utilize insurance in my practice. I've tried to explain a few of my reasons below...
Insurance companies require therapists to fill out excessive amounts of paperwork while paying a subpar fee for services. This means each session takes more of my time while I am paid a lower fee.
Part of this required paperwork is notes taken during and about the subject of our sessions together. These notes are shared with the insurance reviewer during any routine reviews used to prevent fraud. This would lead to sharing of your private information with strangers.
Insurance companies also only pay for the treatment that it deems "medically necessary". This generally omits typical life crises such as the death of a loved one, job loss, relationship problems, coping with a stressful situation, or even trying to improve life circumstances. You are limited to treatment for mental illness only.
Building on the last point, insurances require the client to be diagnosed with a medical diagnosis and will only reimburse for approved diagnoses such as Major Depression, OCD, or Bipolar disorder. This diagnosis will then remain as part of your official medical record.
Lastly, insurances will cap the number of visits, which will often cause us to terminate our serves sooner than we would like to and before our work is finished. Staying on a private pay basis allows US to make these decisions. I strongly believe the client and the therapist should be making these decisions together without interference from a stranger made on the basis of saving money for an insurance company.
Do you offer a sliding scale fee?
No, but I do work with Open Path to provide services at reduced rates to those who are unable to otherwise afford it. If this is something that interests you, please check out the link below for further information, and remember to request Jean Snyder!