Frequently Asked Questions

Explore and select questions for answers.


+ Why should I choose Arrow Therapy?

This is an excellent question! Why should you choose me as your therapist? Especially since there are plenty of other therapists around the Twin Cities. I believe, and research has shown, that the relationhsip between you and your therapist is what generates change. In other words, I believe that change happens through relationships. The relationship that you have with your therapist is a huge factor in how successful you are in therapy, and becasue our relationship is so importatant to me, I offer a free 30-minute initial session. This is a way for us to get to know each other, for you to ask questions, and for us both to decide if we are a good fit. If we both feel that we are not a good fit, that is no problem. I know plenty of other therapists in the area who specialize in a variety of things and I will help you find another therapist who will be a good fit.


+ Is counseling right for me?

Seeking out counseling can be a very difficult decision. There are many reasons why people come to counseling. Sometimes it is to deal with long-standing issues, or problems with anxiety or depression. Other times it is in response to unexpected changes in one's life such as a divorce, infidelity, or work transition. Many seek the advice of counsel as they pursue their own personal exploration and growth. Working with a therapist can help provide insight, support, and new strategies for all types of life challenges. Therapy can help address many types of issues including depression, anxiety, conflict, grief, stress management, relationship issues, communication issues, and general life transitions. Counseling is right for anyone who is interested in getting the most out of their life by taking responsibility, creating greater self-awareness, and working towards change in their lives.


+ Are you going to tell me to get a divorce/break up?

Whether I see you indivudually or with your significant other, I would never tell anyone to get a divorce or to stay married, for that matter. I will meet you where you are at and will give you honest feedback about what I see happening in your relationship. If you want to stay together I will give you the tools and the skills you will need to enhance your relationship. If you want to get a divorce/break up I will help you through that process. Or, if you simply don't know what you want, and you find yourself going back and forth (which is very common), I will help you decide what will be the best outcome for you.


+ Do I really need counseling? I can usually handle my problems.

I understand that seeking counseling can be really unpleasant and I totally get that you probably don't want to be here any longer than you have to. Most of my clients have never been to therapy and they initially tell me that they are not thrilled about being here (and I get that!), yet they feel that they would benefit from an unbiased 3 party perspective. Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need some extra support, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.


+ Why would I pay you when I can just talk to a friend?

While our friends know us well, and can be a huge support during tough times, some things may be beyond the scope of what a friend can provide. A number of benefits are available from participating in counseling. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists can provide insight and a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from counseling depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:

  • Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
  • Developing skills for improving your relationships
  • Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
  • Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
  • Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
  • Improving communications and listening skills
  • Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
  • Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
  • Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence

+ I am not sure if this if for me. What is therapy/counseling like?

Every session is unique and caters to each individual and their specific goals. It is standard for therapists to discuss the primary issues and concerns in your life during therapy sessions. It is common to schedule a series of weekly sessions, where each session lasts around fifty minutes. Therapy can be short-term, focusing on a specific issue, or longer-term, addressing more complex issues or ongoing personal growth. I will never force you to do anything, however, there may be times when you are asked to take certain actions outside of the therapy sessions, such as reading a relevant book or keeping records to track certain behaviors. It is important to process what has been discussed and integrate it into your life between sessions. For therapy to be most effective you must be an active participant, both during and between the sessions. People seeking counseling are willing to take responsibility for their actions, work towards self-change and create greater awareness in their lives. Here are some things you can expect out of therapy:

  • Compassion, respect and understanding
  • Perspectives to illuminate persistent patterns and negative feelings
  • Real strategies for enacting positive change
  • Effective and proven techniques along with practical guidance

+ Is medication a substitute for therapy?

In some cases a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you. It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness.


+ Do you accept insurance? How does insurance work?

To determine if you have mental health coverage, the first thing you should do is check with your insurance carrier. Check your coverage carefully and find the answers to the following questions:

  • What are my mental health benefits?
  • What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
  • How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
  • How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
  • Is approval required from my primary care physician?

At this time I choose to be a fee-for-service provider and do not accept insurance. The benefit of seeing a fee-for-service provider is that all of your information is kept confidential between you and your therapist. If you choose to use your insurance to pay for therapy your therapist will have to give you a mental health diagnosis and your insurance company may want a copy of your treatment plan and therapy notes. What many people don't realize is that having a mental health diagnosis may become permanent on your health record which could, to name a few, potentially affect future jobs and life insurance policies. While some may be okay with this, others may want to keep their health records private and confidential. By choosing to pay cash for therapy the work you do in therapy is kept confidential between you and your therapist. In other words, there will be no paper trail. Additionally, couples and family therapy may not be covered by your insurance at all.


+ Is therapy confidential?

In general, yes. The law protects the confidentiality of all communications between a client and psychotherapist. No information is disclosed without prior written permission from the client.

However, there are some exceptions required by law to this rule. Exceptions include:

  • Suspected child abuse or dependant adult or elder abuse. The therapist is required to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.
  • If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person. The therapist is required to notify the police.
  • If a client intends to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to work with the individual to ensure their safety. However, if an individual does not cooperate, additional measures may need to be taken.

In general the law protects the relationship between a client and a psychotherapist, and information cannot be disclosed without written permission. However, therapists are considered mandated reporters and there are exceptions.

In the following situations your authorization is not required for me to release information:

  • To report suspicion of abuse or neglect of children or vulnerable adults.
  • To report prenatal exposure to cocaine, heroin, phencyclidine, methamphetamine, amphetamine or their derivatives, THC, and excess and habitual use of alcohol.
  • To report the misconduct of mental health or health care professionals.
  • To provide a spouse or parent of a deceased client access to their child or spouses' records.
  • To provide parents of minor children access to their child's records. Minor clients can request, in writing, that particular information not be disclosed to parents. Such a request should be discussed with the therapist.
  • If a client is threatening serious bodily harm to another person/s, the therapist must notify the police and inform the intended victim.
  • If a client intends to harm himself or herself, I will make every effort to enlist their cooperation in ensuring their safety. If they do not cooperate, I will take further measures without their permission that are provided to me by law in order to ensure their safety.
  • The therapist may have to release records if subpoenaed by the courts.
  • Therapists obligations to contracts (e.g. to employer of client, to an insurance carrier or health plan).

Still looking for answers?

Contact me to schedule an appointment, or to ask me questions directly.

PHONE

612.237.7728 (call or text)

EMAIL

brooke@brookeschmidt.com  

OFFICE

6542 Regency Lane, Suite 110
Eden Prairie, MN 5534
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