Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of therapy/counseling?
Learn more about yourself, and how you respond to your surroundings. Improve relationships. Relieve/manage stress. Overcome depression, anxiety, psychological trauma, stress, etc.
The more we know ourselves, the better we can navigate our world and the people in it. Remember, it doesn't have to be bad to get better. So, don't wait until the moment it's too unbareable to manage before starting your journey to feeling more complete.
What does therapy/counseling help with?
Anxiety. Depression. Stress. Psychological Trauma. ADHD. Feeling bad about yourself, or not recognizing yourself anymore. Social Skills. Relationship Problems. Family Conflicts. Anger. Self-improvement. And More. If you are experiencing challenges that have brought you to this website, call or email us to find out if we're a good fit for your needs.
What can I expect in my first session?
During your first session, we are getting to know each other. At the root of all successful therapy is the therapeutic relationship. This is the time your therapist learn about what brought you to see him/her, and begin to understand you as a person, beyond your presenting challenges. We also start to plan and develop a realistic plan for upcoming sessions.
How long does therapy usually take; weeks, months, years...?
This is definitely a frequent question, and, unfortunately, there is no standardized answer. For most clients, we recommend committing to at least four to six weeks of weekly sessions, in order to build a strong foundation. Frequency, thereafter, will be determined based on your needs and appropriateness. Change and growth take time. Each person and family are unique, so the needed time may differ and fluctuate for each client.
Sessions are 50 - 60 minutes, depending on your need. You may request 90 minute sessions when scheduling your appointment; additional fees for added time apply.
What if I decide my therapist is not a good fit for me?
During the first couple of sessions, you will get to know your therapist and whether or not you are comfortable with him or her. Sometimes, you discover your therapist may not be the most comfortable fit for what you wish to accomplish. This is perfectly normal and acceptable. We provide a safe space for you to be honest about what you need and how we are doing in helping you reach these needs. If you feel like our approach is not working how you want, please talk to to your therapist about it. If we are not able to make adjustments to suit you, we will help you find another clinician.
If I'm only coming for individual therapy, can I bring my partner or spouse to sessions on occasion?
Each sessions is designated for you, the primary client, and your needs. If you (and your therapist) determine that having your partner present is beneficial to you, we can certainly plan accordingly. We ask that you discuss this request with your therapist before bringing your partner.
Do you offer after-hours or emergency appointments?
We schedule by appointment only, and do not maintain specific or consistent office hours. If you have a need for a session outside of your scheduled appointment, you are welcome to call your therapist to discuss. Note that immediate availability is not guaranteed. If you are experiencing a medical or life-threatening mental health emergency, you will need to call 911 or go to your closest emergency room.
How much does therapy cost?
Therapy is an investment in you and those around you whom you care about. Our rates are in-line with what is typical and reasonable for the Decatur/Atlanta area. Our clinicians' rates range from $105 to $135 per one-hour session, and from $150 to $180 for 1.5 hour sessions. Family consultations are $150 per hour.
Our associate clinicians offer adjusted-rate sessions on a limited basis. These rates are determined based on financial needs of clients and availability of the adjusted rate spots. Proof of income is required for adjusted rate agreements.
Can I use my insurance, and what does "out-of-network" mean?
We know you have insurance for a reason: because you want to use it when you need it. Some of our clinicians are in-network with Anthem/Blue Cross Blue Shield. Please ask your therapist if he/she is in-network with your insurance provider before scheduling your first appointment. All other insurance is filed out-of-network.
"Out-of-network" means that we do not have a contract with that insurance company. Our mission is to provide the highest quality of care, specific to your needs, without limitations or stipulations from your insurance company, and with respect to your privacy (filing insurance claims requires a diagnosis that becomes part of your medical record). We are happy to provide invoices/superbills, so that you may file for benefits from your insurance company. Please be sure to contact your customer service representative to get a full understanding of your policy, and all out-of-network benefits. Out-of-network benefits are determined by your insurance provider, not us.
Many Blue Cross Blue Shield POS and HMO in-network plans require you to, first, meet your deductible before paying for services. This means you pay the full negotiated rate (less than our hourly rate) until your deductible is met. Clients are responsible for tracking their deductible status.
Is what I discuss in my therapy session confidential?
What happens in session, stays in session. We respect your privacy, and so does the law. You are protected under both confidentiality and privilege*, meaning we will not discuss anything about you, or even acknowledge that you are a client to anyone, without first getting your written permission.
When filing insurance, however, there are limitations. We are required to provide a clinical diagnosis, which becomes part of your medical history, and may be seen when applying for future insurance plans.
*Please note, that we are mandated reports. In the event that child abuse is disclosed, we are required by law to report said abuse to DFCS. It's not up to us to determine validity of abuse reports; we are simply required to notify DFCS. Also, your safety is very important to us. If we feel that you are a risk to yourself or to others, we may insist that you seek more intensive care from a hospital or inpatient facility.
What is clinical hypnotherapy?
Clinical hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis in conjunction with evidenced-based psychological techniques. It is the avenue through which healing takes place, not the healing itself. Hypnosis can be described as the use of meditation, imagery, and suggestions to help you unlock experiences and/or ideas that were always there, but perhaps clouded or muted, due to your inner critic. Hypnosis helps you relax to a state where this critic is still present, but less active and less verbal. Click here for more information.
Am I in control of my thoughts, words, and actions during hypnosis?
Yes, during hypnosis, you are completely in control of your experience. It is nothing like you've seen on TV or in the movies. There are no pendulum watches, and you will never be forced to do something you don't want to do. Likewise, this is not a miracle - if you've seen the movie Office Space; that effect of hypnosis is not real. As a hypnotherapist, I make suggestions; you decide whether or not they fit for you.
Am I asleep during hypnotherapy, and can I wake up if I want?
You are not actually asleep. The best way to describe your experience is to imagine that state of relaxation just before you fall asleep, where your body is relaxed and your mind is free without judgment. You may want to close your eyes to allow yourself to be fully present in the imagery, but it's not actually necessary. You are able to open your eyes at any time.
What is mindfulness, and how does it work?
Mindfulness is simply paying attention to right now on purpose with curiosity and intention; not judgment, shame, or unrealistic expectation. It's a heightened sense of awareness. It includes practices, such as meditation and yoga, as well as others. When we invent and react to stories created from past experience and predictions of future outcomes, the feelings are really happening, but the thoughts that fuel them are not facts in the present. Mindfulness helps us stay present to identify what is actually happening right now. Click here for more information.
Art therapy is a practice which combines the creative processes of art making with counseling/psychotherapy. This mode of therapy creates a space for growth and healing beyond the limitations of words. An art therapist is a licensed mental health professional with a Master's Degree in art therapy who has completed a minimum level of supervision to become registered in the profession. Click here for more information.
Do I have to be good at art?
No, art therapy is for all levels of artistic skill and experience. Even if you've never done art before, you will find this creative and experiential process beneficial.
Is art therapy just for kids?
Art therapy is for kids, adolescents, and adults of all ages. Research has shown this modality to be incredibly effective for children, due to going beyond the need for words. Children don't have the emotional vocabulary many adults do, therefore, respond well to art therapy. Adults also benefit greatly from this modality, given its ability to move us through an experience without having to first make sense of it with words.
Art therapy is available as individual therapy and in groups.
Do I need to bring my own materials for art therapy?
All the materials you will need are provided by Megan and Katie during your session. If you have specific mediums of art you wish to share in therapy, you are certainly welcome to discuss with your therapist, or bring to your session.
How are yoga and meditation used in therapy at The Peaceful Place?
All of our clinicians are experienced in meditation, and will sometimes use this practice in session to assist in grounding, calming, increasing present moment awareness, and teaching for home practice. Katie Powers is trained and qualified to provide yoga for children, which is included in some groups and in individual sessions, when appropriate and when the client is comfortable with this practice. Other clinicians may use specific forms or poses to assist in and enhance the therapeutic process.
I see that you all utilize methods like, hypnotherapy, meditation, art therapy. Do I have to participate in those as part of my therapy?
In short, No. We cater your therapeutic experience specifically to your needs. We develop a path for growth and development with you, not for you; therefore, you choose what and when specialized techniques are incorporated, if at all.