10 March 2006

New counselor, new model

I fired my counselor and my psychiatrist.  About two or three weeks ago, I found another and made the arrangements for my GP/CRNP to take over the supervision of my medications.  This is one of the major things going on in my life.

See, the most effective counselor I ever had was promoted to a different program in December 04.  So in January 05, I began to see a new counselor at the same center.  About a month ago, I realized that she was not very effective at all.  I couldn't say that we worked through ANY issues at all in the year that I saw her.

I do feel that I've grown, but I don't feel that she had much to do with that.  I know that I need to work through all sorts of crap and I didn't think she was the one to help with that process.  I did, however, notify her that I did need to work on some things.  She said that we would see each other every week.  That didn't happen.  Three weeks after she said that, I finally went to see the director of the center.

I expressed my needs and how they weren't being met.  I know that the center is the ONLY "option" available for many on Medicare and/or Medicaid.  There are only three counselors available to the adults who need care.  Then my counselor, a week after I left the center's "care" ended up in the hospital (and has not been able to work the last few weeks due to illness).

Although I regret that she is ill, I sure am glad that I found an alternative situation.  See the problem mostly is that licensed professional counselors are not reimbursed by Medicare/Medicaid, unless they work within a clinic setting.  If the LPCs are in private practice, they won't get reimbursed, so they can't accept that sort of insurance (because it won't pay).  There has been pending legislature being kicked around for quite some time.

Fortunately, I found a counselor who accepted me as a client, self-pay, on a reduced rate.  She is very professional, maintains her boundaries, while still being reasonably accessible to her clients.  She cares about the well-being of her clients and doesn't regard this merely as a job, but as a true calling and blessing.

We went over the goals and expectations I have and the rights and responsibilities that we each have.  She uses the Internal Family Systems Model, developed by Dick Schwartz.  We had one full session, but I had spoken with her extensively before that to cover all the formalities.

I visited the IFS web-site.  Reading and reviewing the model helped me to understand how the model works and how she will be using the model.  That way, we were able to begin work right away.

It's hard.  It's good.   It exhausts me.  It makes me nervous, because it's scary stuff that I am dealing with.  But I am confident in this counselor's abilities and motivations.  Since she does check in with me, and encourage me to let her know what is going on, how I feel, are we going at a good pace or too fast, do I need to take a break, can I keep going, etc.; I feel that this is a good fit, all the way around.

So, that's the deal.  The big thing that is the main focus of my life at the moment.  Cuz, I gotta get through this.


  1. Counselors, therapists and psychiatrists are far more important than many realize. If there is friction, or just not a good fit between patient and therapist, chances are the relationship is doomed and nothing ends up being accomplished.

  2. I know giving up two of your dogs was so very difficult, but you realized the necessity of it. Seems like you are going through MANY changes and they will all be for the better. I am very proud of you Debra!   Anne

  3. I'm glad you were able to find someone you could work with. So vital when dealing with issues I'm sure you are dealing with.


  4. Sounds like you're lining em' up and knockin' em' down.  Good for you, chicky!

    andi  :)  :)


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