Frequently Asked Questions About Marriage and Family Counseling

How do I get started with marriage or family counseling?

Would you prefer to work with a male or a female? If you want to work with Dick Conant call or text him at 207-475-4156 or send an email to therapy@roadrunner.com and let him know of your desire to start counseling.  If you prefer a female please call or text Bev Conant at 281-961-0807 or email therapy@roadrunner.com and let her know you want to start counseling. Call Chad Dalessandri at 207-432-8210 or email him at Chad.higherground@gmail.com.  We will send you the intake paperwork and let you know of some available appointment times.

How does family counseling help?

Counseling can help in many situations. Some individuals might need a safe person and a safe place to discuss their inner most thoughts and feelings. They may want to do something that would prove harmful but they don’t know why.  A counselor can help draw these motivations out so they can be explored. Counseling can also serve as a place of accountability or a place to begin establishing more trust in their lives.

Is it possible to get better by myself without family counseling?

Not everyone needs therapy. Many can and do get better without outside intervention.  Part of the key to personal healing is how well one can open up, surrender the hurts inside, forgive and begin to trust again. If all that can be done by the individual themselves, then counseling may not be necessary. If you have tried that and it hasn’t helped then you might give counseling a try.

Do you recommend psychiatrists?

Yes, and we do so unashamedly. This is not a lack of faith. The research indicates that counseling in combination with medication provides the best results.

Can I get better by just taking medication?

Many people just take medication and live full and fruitful lives. Their situation is more organic in nature.

What is Christian counseling and how is it different from other types of counseling?

Secular counselors are trained not to bring their values into the therapy room. They are to be absolutely neutral with everyone in every situation. Many situational ethics prevail and whatever a person chooses is OK as long as they “feel” better. People coming from a faith-based perspective know deep down in their soul that choosing what makes them “feel” better is only a temporary fix. They innately understand that to gain a clear conscience and to heal inside they must deal with the difficult choices in front of them. Attempting to apply biblical principles to relational difficulties can bring effective healing that will last.

How long does family counseling last?

It depends on how rapidly the individual can change. When people come to our office they do so because something or someone has been bothering them in a significant manner. They know that the other might not change so their outlook and way of dealing with that person might have to change. Some have a difficult time with change while others see a new truth and quickly absorb it into their way of thinking and relating. Another answer to this question is to observe that the average amount of sessions is approximately 6 to 10. You may need fewer or more sessions depending on what motivated you to seek help initially. Of one thing you can be sure – we are not going to continue if we don’t believe therapy is helpful any longer.

Do you accept insurance?

Yes. We are on all the major insurance company provider networks, plus Tricare, Military OneSource, MaineCare and NH Medicaid.

Do I have to be a Christian to come to your office?

Dick and Bev are Christian counselors. Obviously many Christians are very intentional about seeking out a therapist who is of a similar value system. However, not everyone who comes to our office is Christian but desire a therapist of Judeo-Christian values. Some are referred by their insurance company or EAP for counseling. Be assured that we are professionals and will respect your belief system. We will meet you where you are in your spiritual pilgrimage.

If my spouse won’t come, will coming alone for individual counseling help me?

It is not unusual for a spouse to be unhappy in a marriage and the other spouse to not feel comfortable enough to go to counseling. This is an unfortunate reality. However, one spouse can make a difference because we know if one part of the family system changes or improves, it changes the entire system.

What should I do to prepare for family counseling

It would be helpful to think clearly about your desired goal. Answer this question, “I will feel that counseling is successful if __________ is accomplished.” This applies to individual, marital and family counseling. You may find it helpful to write these thoughts out as you are clarifying to yourself what you want accomplished in your session time.

Exif JPEGWhat is Play Therapy?

Play therapy is a special process that focuses on children’s need to express themselves through the use of play. Children are encouraged to play as they wish with Bev, a trained child therapist, who provides a safe and understanding environment. In this process a wide variety of toys are made available to children to encourage the expression of emotional concerns. Children are given the opportunity to express themselves through a wide variety of styles including art, play, sand play, dramatic play and fantasy play.

What happens in Play Therapy?

Through the play therapy process, children create play that resembles the emotional experiences they are
struggling with internally. These experiences usually cannot be expressed verbally (that’s why general talk therapy doesn’t work with some children). Children select special toys to include in their play and use these toys to recreate issues that represent emotional conflicts that are important to them. Beginning with this expression, the child’s play evolves until the child gains a sense of understanding and comfort over the
situation.

How can Play Therapy help my child?

Through the Play Therapy process, children can change their personal view of events in the world and being to better enjoy their interactions with others. Children can recreate their frustrations or disappointments with Beverly and then change the experience of that situation in their play. Then they begin to enjoy ore of their play experiences and therefore, more of life’s interactions. This leads to higher self-esteem and more enjoyment of activities with family, friends and peers. We all know this makes parenting a more enjoyable process.

How long will my child need to be in therapy?

Play Therapy is a process that depends on several factors in the child’s past and present experiences. The two most important factors are the developmental stage of the child and secondly, the age of the child at the onset of the issue at hand. Usually, the more recent the events, the shorter the length of therapy. The further back in the child’s development that the issue occured, the longer the play therapy process will take.

Is play different in Play Therapy than when my child plays at home?

The basic function of play remains the same in both situations. Play, to children, is a natural way to rehearse for life’s interactions. Play basically has three purposes. The first two are for cognitive and motor development. The third is for emotional resolutions. When facilitated by a trained play therapist, the play becomes focused on emotional purposes. This leads to understanding and reestablishment of balance in the child’s sense of well-being.

How will I be involved as a parent?

Parent involvement is important in the Play Therapy process. Parents will be asked to meet with the therapist on a regular basis. A parent ay become involved in Play Therapy by joining their child in the play therapy process, if recommended by the therapist. Parents also weill be asked to contribute to their child’s progress by following recommendations of the which may include activities outside the Play Therapy room that support the therapy process.

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