Choosing a Therapist
Therapy involves a large commitment of time and energy, so you should be very careful about the therapist you select. Although credentials, training, and experience are important, by far the most important factor is whether you feel you can connect with that person.
Although therapy can offer many benefits, perhaps the greatest is in knowing that no matter what type of issue you may suffer from, someone understands. Sometimes it just helps to talk to a patient, trusted person about your situation and problems. In addition, therapy can offer new perspectives and solutions to old problems that you may be struggling with, and help you to resolve issues before they become major obstacles in life. In addition, knowing that you are facing your demons and solving your problems can lead to a renewed sense of self-esteem and confidence.
What to Expect
From Your Therapist
You can expect from your therapist that they will not waste your time. If you are feeling stuck, overwhelmed, confused, anxious, or depressed, you will define together what your situation is and you will work together toward change. Sometimes that change happens quickly, sometimes it happens in slow increments, but it always happens. Our therapists pledge that they will follow your lead, offer feedback and options that you may not have thought about, and support you in reaching your goals. They also pledge that they will keep the environment in their office emotionally safe and respectful for everyone involved.
It is difficult to predict how long therapy will take. Usually therapy ends when you and your therapist decide that you have made satisfactory progress in achieving your goals. Some people achieve this in just a few sessions; others continue therapy for years before they feel they are ready to leave. Generally, symptom-focused therapy, such as overcoming an anger problem, is shorter, while uncovering, insight-oriented therapy takes much longer.
All information disclosed within sessions is confidential and you therapist does not release any information to anyone without your written permission except where disclosure is required or permitted in the following circumstances:
Therapy with Minor Children
Minors are people under 18 years of age. Parents are often understandably interested in the content and progress of therapy for their minor child. Except in special circumstances, parents of a non-emancipated minor in treatment “hold the privilege.” This means that in a legal proceeding, and regardless of the child’s wishes, parents could permit the release of information about the child’s treatment. Parents also decide whether to permit a therapist to communicate with a child’s teacher, probation officer, physician, etc., should this become an issue. Both parents, including a non-custodial parent, have a legal right to information about their child’s treatment in most circumstances (and must consent to therapy for the child). At the same time, a confidential relationship is an important element of effective treatment for a child (especially teenagers), as well as for an adult.
In New Mexico, a child is any person under the age of 18. Child abuse includes sexual abuse, neglect, or willful cruelty or unjustifiable punishment of a child. Sexual abuse means sexual assault or sexual exploitation. Neglect means the negligent treatment or maltreatment of a child by a person responsible for a child’s welfare. Child abuse includes a physical injury that is inflicted by other than accidental means. The latter includes any situation where any person willfully causes or permits any child to suffer, or inflicts unjustifiable physical pain or mental suffering, or permits the health of the child to be placed in a situation such that his or her person or health is endangered. In addition, child abuse includes a situation where any person willfully inflicts upon a child any cruel or inhuman corporal punishment or injury resulting in a traumatic condition.