What to Expect

Who can benefit from therapy?

You might be surprised by how much therapy can help improve your current situation or lifestyle. You may need to respond to unexpected changes in your life or relationship or seek self-exploration and personal growth. When you are overwhelmed by anger, loneliness, guilt, indecisiveness, anxiety, or despair, therapy can help. Often times the people closest to us are involved in the problem(s) or are unable to provide helpful support and advice to help us move forward. A therapist can be the best option during these critical times.

What can I expect from my therapist?

Confidentiality, clear direction, and genuine care and concern. I’m trained to listen, lead you to the root of your problem(s), help you set realistic goals and develop solutions.

 

There is actually a science to therapy. As a licensed clinician with a strong research background, I study different theories, techniques, therapeutic models, and frameworks, which guide the questions I ask as well as the activities I encourage you to participate in during the session. Well-trained therapists rarely give subjective advice or merely listen without formulating new ideas to help move you forward. The process does require patience on your part though.

 

During sessions, you will identify and discuss your primary concerns and issues. A standard session lasts 50 minutes, but some people prefer longer sessions. Weekly sessions are most effective. It is beneficial to think about what was discussed during the time between sessions. At times, you may be asked to take certain actions outside of our sessions, such as reading a relevant book or journaling. Therapy is most successful when you are an active participant, both inside and outside of sessions.

 

What benefits can I gain from participating in therapy?

Some of the benefits available from therapy include:

·       Attaining a better understanding of yourself and your personal goals and values

·       Developing skills for improving your relationships

·       Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy

·       Finding new ways to cope with stress and anxiety

·       Managing anger, depression, and other emotional pressures

·       Improving communications skills

·       Getting "unstuck" from unhealthy patterns - breaking old behaviors and developing new ones

·       Discovering new ways to solve problems

·       Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence

 

What if I don't know what my goals are for therapy?

Many clients are aware that they need help, but are not sure how to set goals that will help them resolve their issues. If you aren't sure what your goals are for therapy, I will help you set them. This happens early in the process. During the course of therapy, your goals may change. However, establishing a direction for therapy will help you get the most out of the experience and know when you’ve finished the process.

 

Is therapy confidential?

In general, the law protects information shared between a client and his/her psychotherapist. Information is not disclosed without a client’s written permission except in the following cases:

1.    Suspected child abuse or elder abuse. The therapist is required by law to report this to the appropriate authorities immediately.

2.    If a client is threatening to harm or kill another person. The therapist is required by law to notify the proper authorities and inform the intended victim.

3.    If a client is threatening to harm himself or herself. The therapist will make every effort to enlist the client’s cooperation with ensuring their safety. If they do not cooperate, further measures may be taken without their permission in order to protect them.

 

Your relationship with me is built on trust and a mutual understanding that everything you share remains confidential. I’m not here to judge you or the things you share with me. Instead, I’m here to support you, educate you, and provide information that will help you improve your situation. Trust is a very important component in therapy. In order for trust to develop, you must allow me to prove that I can handle the information I’m given.

 

How can a therapist relate to my personal experiences?

Believe it or not, I don’t have to be just like you or even experience all the things you have experienced to be equipped to help you. Thankfully, a heart surgeon doesn’t have to experience a heart attack to know how to save a heart attack victim’s life. They rely on their education, training, and experience to fix the problem. Similarly, therapists use their knowledge of relationship dynamics and patterns, research, and experience to help you gain new insight into your situation. Often, it is even helpful for a therapist to have a different background or experience from yours. This gives them a different perspective to add.

 

Interested in scheduling an appointment?

1401 Mercantile Lane, Suite 200-G 

Largo, MD 20774 

Weena Cullins

Marriage & Family Therapist

MS  |  LCMFT

Washington, DC Metro Area

Tel: (301) 592-7244

weenacullins.com

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