Can I schedule a virtual appointment if I live outside of Georgia?
Yes. Latasha Matthews is licensed to serve clients in the state of Florida as well as Georgia. Florida residents will have to pay her self-pay rate as she is unable to accept insurance for Florida.
How can therapy help me?
A number of benefits are available from participating in therapy. Therapists can provide support, problem-solving skills, and enhanced coping strategies for issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship troubles, unresolved childhood issues, grief, stress management, body image issues and creative blocks. Many people also find that counselors can be a tremendous asset to managing personal growth, interpersonal relationships, family concerns, marriage issues, and the hassles of daily life. Therapists can provide a fresh perspective on a difficult problem or point you in the direction of a solution. The benefits you obtain from therapy depend on how well you use the process and put into practice what you learn. Some of the benefits available from therapy include:
Attaining a better understanding of yourself, your goals and values
Developing skills for improving your relationships
Finding resolution to the issues or concerns that led you to seek therapy
Learning new ways to cope with stress and anxiety
Managing anger, grief, depression, and other emotional pressures
Improving communications and listening skills
Changing old behavior patterns and developing new ones
Discovering new ways to solve problems in your family or marriage
Improving your self-esteem and boosting self-confidence
Do I really need therapy? I can usually handle my problems.
Everyone goes through challenging situations in life, and while you may have successfully navigated through other difficulties you've faced, there's nothing wrong with seeking out extra support when you need it. In fact, therapy is for people who have enough self-awareness to realize they need a helping hand, and that is something to be admired. You are taking responsibility by accepting where you're at in life and making a commitment to change the situation by seeking therapy. Therapy provides long-lasting benefits and support, giving you the tools you need to avoid triggers, re-direct damaging patterns, and overcome whatever challenges you face.
Why do people go to therapy and how do I know if it is right for me?
People have many different motivations for coming to psychotherapy. Some may be going through a major life transition (unemployment, divorce, new job, etc.), or are not handling stressful circumstances well. Some people need assistance managing a range of other issues such as low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, addictions, relationship problems, spiritual conflicts and creative blocks. Therapy can help provide some much-needed encouragement and help with skills to get them through these periods. Others may be at a point where they are ready to learn more about themselves or want to be more effective with their goals in life. In short, people seeking psychotherapy are ready to meet the challenges in their lives and ready to make changes in their lives.
What is therapy like?
Because each person has different issues and goals for therapy, therapy will be different depending on the individual. In general, you can expect to discuss the current events happening in your life, your personal history relevant to your issue, and report progress (or any new insights gained) from the previous therapy session. Depending on your specific needs, therapy can be short-term, for a specific issue, or longer-term, to deal with more difficult patterns or your desire for more personal development. Either way, it is most common to schedule regular sessions with your therapist (usually weekly).
It is important to understand that you will get more results from therapy if you actively participate in the process. The ultimate purpose of therapy is to help you bring what you learn in session back into your life. Therefore, beyond the work you do in therapy sessions, your therapist may suggest some things you can do outside of therapy to support your process - such as reading a pertinent book, journaling on specific topics, noting particular behaviors or taking action on your goals. People seeking psychotherapy are ready to make positive changes in their lives, are open to new perspectives and take responsibility for their lives.
What about medication vs. psychotherapy?
It is well established that the long-term solution to mental and emotional problems and the pain they cause cannot be solved solely by medication. Instead of just treating the symptom, therapy addresses the cause of our distress and the behavior patterns that curb our progress. You can best achieve sustainable growth and a greater sense of well-being with an integrative approach to wellness. Working with your medical doctor you can determine what's best for you, and in some cases, a combination of medication and therapy is the right course of action.
Do you take insurance, and how does that work?
To determine if you have mental health coverage through your insurance carrier, the first thing you should do is call them. Check your coverage carefully and make sure you understand their answers. Some helpful questions you can ask them:
What are my mental health benefits?
What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
How many therapy sessions does my plan cover?
How much does my insurance pay for an out-of-network provider?
Is approval required from my primary care physician?
What is the 'No Surprises Act?
This act is protection against surprise medical bills. If you have private health insurance, these new protections ban the most common types of surprise bills. If you’re uninsured or you decide not to use your health insurance for a service, under these protections, you can often get a good faith estimate of the cost of your care upfront, before your visit. If you disagree with your bill, you may be able to dispute the charges. Visit CMS.gov/nosurprises, or call the Help Desk at 1-800-985-3059 for more information.TTY users can call 1-800-985-3059.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
Confidentiality is one of the most important components between a client and psychotherapist. Successful therapy requires a high degree of trust with highly sensitive subject matter that is usually not discussed anywhere but the therapist's office. Every therapist should provide a written copy of their confidential disclosure agreement, and you can expect that what you discuss in session will not be shared with anyone. This is called “Informed Consent”. Sometimes, however, you may want your therapist to share information or give an update to someone on your healthcare team (you’re your Physician, Naturopath, Attorney), but by law, your therapist cannot release this information without obtaining your written permission.
However, state law and professional ethics require therapists to maintain confidentiality except for the following situations:
* Suspected past or present abuse or neglect of children, adults, and elders to the authorities, including Child Protection and law enforcement, based on information provided by the client or collateral sources.
* If the therapist has reason to suspect the client is seriously in danger of harming him/herself or has threatened to harm another person.
What is the difference between "counseling" and "coaching"?
Counseling is a service provided by a licensed professional who is trained to work with clients who are struggling with disorders such as depression, anxiety, grief, post-traumatic disorder, and anger issues. The client works to explore the source of the problem by examining past experiences and feelings that may have developed as a result of the experience. The focus on counseling is to work towards resolving and stabilizing feelings and thoughts which produces healthy long-term mental health and an increase in confidence to handling life.
Coaching is focused primarily focused on the future without the exploration of the "root" of what may have caused the problem. Many coaches help their clients to develop goals that will increase strength and capacity to embrace the opportunity. Coaching provides accountability and support to increase feelings about approaching future goals.
What if I want therapy and my spouse does not?
You may want to consider individual therapy to work on resolving your feelings about your relationship. By working on your own issues, you will influence your spouse to consider making changes so that you can grow together.
Counseling is never supposed to be forced on anyone. Allow your spouse to examine their own feelings and embrace the chance to improve together with you.
Does the therapist choose sides during therapy?
Absolutely Not! Couples Therapy is about working through difficult areas and finding common ground or what is clinically called developing a new norm for the marriage. Each marriage goes through growth and change. Throughout the growth, individuals change at different times and this can cause strife in the marriage.
The goal of the therapist is to help the individuals in the marriage recognize the change and adjust to it together.
What should I expect in the session?
The initial session is called an Assessment. In this session, the therapist and the couple build a good rapport through examining the problem areas and the discussion is centered around the effects of the problem and efforts that have been used to alleviate the issue. Focus then moves to realistic creating goals that will bring maximum improvement so that the couple in the relationship will help you to begin feeling better sooner.
How many sessions will we need?
The number of sessions is determined at during the first initial session. If additional sessions are needed, the therapist and the couple will discuss during a session.
Some individual sessions may need to be scheduled to help one spouse work on individual issues that are inflicted upon the relationship.