Frequently Asked Questions About CounselingDarlene Kirtley, M.S. LPC
Oasis Counseling and Enrichment
If I go to counseling, does that mean something is wrong with me?
No, it means something is right! Everyone has problems. Seeking counseling to help with areas of concern takes strong inner resources of initiative, openness, and courage. It shows good judgment and self-care to make an investment of time, effort and resources in your own well-being.
Can't I just talk to a friend about my problem?
It is always nice to share with a trusted friend, however, a friend is not trained in the techniques, theories, and skills that counselors use. They are not impartial and they are not bound by the Code of Ethics to which professional counselors adhere. Using a friend for counseling, especially if done frequently, can put a strain on the relationship. Further, you may have noticed that friends tend to change the subject and/or start talking about their own problems, or offer advice about what they would do. The problem is, they aren't you. A professional counselor will hear you out and focus only on you during your session.
Will a counselor tell me what to do?
No. One common misconception about counselors is that we claim to have all the answers, some special wisdom that you don't have, and will tell you what to do. The media encourages this misconception with entertainment "therapists" who "counsel" people on t.v. or radio for other's entertainment. Many times, people already know what to do. They just need some help clearing away mental or emotional clutter so that they can see their choices more clearly. Counselors can help with clarification and support, but we do not make decisions for you. At times, your counselor may function as an educator and offer suggestions or information, such as parenting or behavior management tips, career exploration, or various therapeutic assignments and recommendations. In the end, your decisions are yours to make and you alone are more qualified than anyone to make them.
Will therapy make me feel better?
Often therapy brings some feelings of relief or comfort, however, in some cases, it can actually make you feel worse— temporarily. Looking at patterns, feelings, relationship challenges, and tough situations is not always easy to do. It is not uncommon for people in therapy to experience periods of anger, sadness and confusion, however the end result should be a lessening of these feelings. Sometimes the growth process can be painful in the short-term, but often leads to benefits that create a more satisfying and enjoyable life in the long-term.
How many sessions will I need?
Each person and situation will vary. People can usually make more progress when they keep regular appointments for a period of time than when they only call during a crisis, however, sometimes people can get a significant benefit in a few sessions. Together we will discuss a schedule that will best meet your needs.
Oasis Counseling & Enrichment
201 Main Suite 9
Parkville, MO 64152