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What do you do in counseling?
Mainly talk together, search for solutions through past history, different perspectives. At times use art, play or exercise/body movement to create desired change.

So, does the therapist just look at me and ask questions? Am I supposed to know all the answers?
Therapy is a process - beginning with the therapist getting to know the client's strengths and struggles - and the client getting to know that therapist's way of counseling. Together a relationship of trust and courage is built between the two.

The therapist may ask questions, use crayons, books, pictures, or body movement to help the client better understand the current situation, release painful memories and emotions and to build new coping skills and strategies. The client always has a right to impact the healing and growth process by giving input and feedback.

Doesn't this hurt?
Maybe, but it also helps. Therapists often think of counseling the way a doctor or dentist approaches their work: I may create some pain (like a root canal, or a surgery) but I know that when I am done you will feel much better.

What if I want to come to counseling but my spouse/partner won't come with me?
Spend a minute or two talking with a me (Jan) about your situation. Most of the time, starting the process with one person builds a nice bridge that opens up the options for the other person/people. Either way, you learn new perspectives and coping skills so that you are better equipped to impact the situation and relationships.

Does it have to be all that emotional stuff - can't I just consult with someone on an intellectual level?
Consulting and thinking a situation through with a therapist often makes a lot of sense. I can usually help you realize your strengths and how to best employ them in your current situation. I can also give you feedback on what approach to take given your specific circumstance.

I often think of myself as life-skills tutor. Just as you would hire a plumber or auto-repair person to do a job that is beyond your skills, so it also makes sense to hire a therapist when relationships and emotions are beyond your current skill level.

How often would I have to meet with my counselor?
Usually weekly meetings are scheduled but that can be adjusted depending on time and resources you have available. Often we meet for 3-6 months to develop long-term change.

What if I have to cancel my scheduled session?
Please just call the office (616-956-3155)  and let me know. If you are canceling with less than 24 hours notice, you may be charged for that time. This is something you would consult Jan about. 

Who gets to know about our conversations?
Anyone YOU choose to tell. As your therapist, I will tell no one without your consent unless there is deep danger to yourself or others, in which case I will work with you, and others as needed, to find a safe and protective place.

What happens if I see my therapist in the grocery store?
As your therapist, I am bound by ethical rules of confidentiality. This means that I will not talk about you, or often to you, outside of the office setting without your permission. But, if you say "Hi" to me in the grocery store, I will gladly chat with you.

How do I know if this therapist is right for me?
The relationship between therapist and client is crucial to the healing process. If you feel your confidence and trust in me as your therapist growing and your skills and understanding are developing and adjusting to fit your needs, then this is a good working relationship and you and I are probably a good fit for this process.

Usually 3-5 sessions with a therapist can tell you if you are with the "right" one. If you are not comfortable, feel free to talk with me, your therapist,  and/or look for a different professional. This is a relationship that really matters.

How much does counseling cost and how do I pay for it?
Counseling rates are based on a 45-60 minute session. It does not matter how many people are in the room - the rate stays the same. The cost for per session is $115.00 for an individual or couple session.  If there is a larger group the session fee might be adjusted.   We accept cash, checks, credit and debit cards (MasterCard, VISA and Discover). Payment is expected at each session unless you have made other arrangements with your therapist.
 You have a right and a responsibility to talk with your therapist about what is affordable for you. At FUNLife I have the freedom to figure out a therapeutic plan that is affordable and healing for you.

Will my medical insurance plan cover this kind of care?
Many plans will cover counseling costs. Checking with Jan at FUNLife and your insurance company can answer that question more completely. If talking with your insurance company is too confusing, then ask your FUNLife therapist (Jan)  to help you with it. I'd be glad to help!

What kind of payments to you take?
We accept cash, checks, credit and debit cards for MasterCard, VISA, American Express and Discover.  Payment is expected at each session unless you have made other arrangements. Use of your HSA or flexible spending account is usually easy and wise to do here.