For those who have never been in therapy (and sometimes for those who have), it’s common to have questions about the therapeutic process in general and about the therapist in particular. Listed below are several questions and answers which you may find helpful. If you have any further inquiries, please feel free to call or e-mail me.
Q: I’m interested in receiving therapy, but what if talking about painful past experiences stirs up even more pain?
A: Therapy may indeed sometimes bring up difficult memories and emotions, but it is often the courage and vulnerability to bravely explore such feelings that results in the greatest healing and empowerment. I have witnessed many people reexamine and even reexperience the pain of the past in order to experience deep growth, integrity, and vitality in the present. A popular sentiment amongst therapists is, “The only way out is through,” because confronting such pain is, ironically, often invaluable in letting it go.
Q: Do you work from a specific theoretical orientation?
A: Yes… and no. Yes, in that I generally work from an integrated model of cognitive behavioral, psychodynamic and existential/humanistic orientations because I believe this approach can be very powerful in facilitating emotional insight and healing. No, in that I am a firm believer that each client has a unique personality, needs, and values, so I also maintain a flexible, creative, and collaborative approach that honors each client’s way of being. A positive and trusting therapeutic alliance is often the biggest predictor of success in therapy, which is why I am ultimately more focused on attending to the depth and quality of our relationship than adhering to any single therapeutic theory or tradition.
Q: I may be going through a tough time, but can’t talking to a trusted friend be just as helpful as seeing a therapist?
A: Therapy is not for everyone, and at times a good friend may be all the help that’s necessary. But for other people and at other times, the compassionate focus and gentle presence of a therapist within a safe and supportive environment may be what is most needed. Such an experience can help you not only overcome emotional wounds, but grow from these wounds in ways that inspire greater self-awareness and personal vitality.
Q: Do you accept insurance? What is your rate per session?
A: At present, I do not accept insurance, but I can provide you with a “super-bill” which you may submit to your insurance company for partial reimbursement. Please know, however, that some companies will reimburse such a bill and others will not. Make sure to check with your provider to clarify their policy regarding this prior to our first meeting.
My standard rate is $150 per clinical hour (50 minutes) or $190 per 80 minutes. I understand, however, that people experience difficult economic circumstances at times, so I offer a slide scale fee which can be discussed and decided before our first session. Payment is in the form of cash or check (made out to Quentin Dunne) and due when we meet for session. Payment via PayPal is also an option if that would work better for you.
Q: How would I know if we’ll connect well before scheduling a session?
A: It’s understandable to be cautious that you may not “click” with the therapist and feel truly safe, supported, and affirmed. To help you make your best decision, I offer a free 15-minute consultation either over the phone or in my office (whichever better suits you) during which you can see if we would work well together.