steve graybar phd
     
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What are my fees? My fee for the first session (usually an hour and fifteen minutes), referred to as the clinical or diagnostic interview, is $200.00 for individual therapy, $225.00 for a couple’s therapy. Thereafter, my fee is $160.00 for an individual session (fifty minutes), and $175.00 for a couple’s session (also fifty minutes).

What insurance plans am I on? Insurance plans are varied and complex. I am not on very many plans for reasons of reimbursement and confidentiality. If I am on your plan, I am happy to work with you. If I am not a provider for your insurance, you may want to check to see whether or not your insurance has provisions for, “out of network” providers. In either case, it is the client’s responsibility to understand and check the specifics of your plan. These specifics include but are not limited to: session limits, amount of co-pay, deductibles, coverage of couples therapy or not, etc.

How long will therapy take? Each person or couple is different. The amount of time therapy takes depends on each person. Ideally, ending therapy is a shared decision between myself, and my client(s). However, it is always the client who has the final say about starting therapy and stopping it. If time is a concern for you, we should discuss it in our very first meeting.

What’s the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist? Technically, the difference is that a psychiatrist has a medical degree and a clinical psychologist such as myself, has a graduate degree. In practice, the gap between psychiatry and psychology is growing wider every day. Today, most, psychiatrists are trained in psychopharmacology and to prescribe medication. They receive relatively little psychotherapy training. Psychologists receive some training in psychopharmacology, (do not prescribe drugs), and receive extensive training in psychotherapy. In sum, psychiatrists prescribe medication psychologists do not. Psychiatrists tend to view emotional problems as biologically based mental illnesses and psychologists view most emotional problems as problems in living and not mental illnesses.

What’s the difference between counseling and psychotherapy? In many ways the two terms are used interchangeably. However, in practice and client expectations, there may be a significant difference between counseling and psychotherapy. In Nevada, anyone can call him or herself a, “counselor,” regardless of the amount of formal training they have received. A “psychologist” in Nevada is a legal term reserved for those individuals who have been licensed by the Board of Psychological Examiners and have gone through extensive education and training leading to a doctoral degree. In addition, counseling often suggests that the practioner will counsel, advise and direct the client in terms of what to do, think, or feel. In psychotherapy, meaningful change is facilitated through a mutual commitment to self-exploration, hard work and healthy risk-taking. It has been my experience that my clients have received mountains of advice from loving and well-intended friends and family members prior to meeting with me. Frequently they have read many self-help books as well. Still, they seek psychotherapy for help. In my own life, I’ve received much sound advice, but rarely followed through on it. Albert Einstein once said that, “Experience is the only teacher, the rest is just information.” There is something about self-discovery, about finding answers for ourselves that seems essential to genuine self-esteem, meaningful change and real growth.

What is the best type of therapy? While I am deeply committed to providing psychodynamic therapy, I am equally respectful of other treatment approaches. Cognitive-behavioral, interpersonal and psychodynamic treatment approaches all have empirical support. That is, scientific evidence for their effectiveness. While individual practitioners may claim superiority of one approach over another, this is simply not supported by the psychotherapy literature. In fact, in the right hands, each of these approaches can be very helpful. In the wrong hands all of them can be destructive. In sum, it is the therapist, not the theory or the techniques of a particular model that make treatment helpful. This is why your personal “radar” should be tuned in during the first phone conversation with your prospective therapist, in the first interview with him or her and in subsequent meetings. Your “gut” reaction is offering you important information about your therapist’s personality and professionalism.

 

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