What do I need to do to see you for therapy?
First, please give yourself compliment because you are taking a first step to find your therapist; it is not easy to take the action, but you are doing it right now.
Please fill out the form to schedule 30 minutes free consultation to see if we are a good fit. If we both find out we are a good fit, we can schedule your first appointment.
Does therapy really work?
There is no guarantee that one type of therapy would work for you without trying. Therapy is half science because it is proven by many times that it works for mental health illness and half art because it is all about relationship between a therapist and a client, meaning there is no guaranteed methods that would create the best relationship between a therapist and a client.
Therapy is also collaborative work. As a therapist, my task is to ensure that you feel safe with me to talk about stories that you do not share with others. Meanwhile, a client’s task is to be motivated to work on their issues. Of course, it is difficult to talk about them; so, your pace should be respected. At the same time, if you do not push yourself to get out of your comfort zone even just a bit, whatever is bothering you will continue to be there.
What are differences between talking to friends and talking to a therapist?
I bet that when you talk to your friends, most of the time, (1) you do not feel heard, (2) your friends talk about something else seemingly related to what you talk about (but not really), or (3) give you bunch of advice based on the friends’ experiences that do not match your case 100%. That is not therapy.
One obvious difference is that I do not give advice. Many people tend to misunderstand therapy; they believe that we, therapists, are good at giving advice. Yet, that is not correct. Therapy is all about understanding yourself. As a therapist, by listening fully and attentively, I become like a mirror for you to help you find yourself. This is something that friends cannot do because they are not trained to provide professional listening skills.
How do I get better without getting advice from you?
This is the question I get the most from those who have never seen a therapist. When you see a good therapist for a while, you are able to create a special relationship that you have never experienced with anyone else; you feel safe, you can trust the therapist, you can also receive contrastive criticism from the therapist without worrying about breaking the relationship. With this type of relationship, you feel ready to face the darkest issues. This is how therapy can help you get better.
How often do I need to see you?
The best way to ensure therapy works for you is that I see you every week. However, from the beginning of therapy, our goal is to say goodbye to each other at some point. If your symptoms start to get better, the frequency of therapy should be reduced to every other week. Then, some clients “graduate” from me. Some prefer to continue to see me with the frequency of once a month for a few months. This is usually discussed as we both sense “graduation” is near.
Do I need to take medications to get better?
It depends. My stance is that I do not recommend medications first. However, based on my clinical judgment, if I believe that medications can be helpful, I will give referrals even at the first session. In fact, medications can help therapy more effective as well.
Can you prescribe medications?
Because I am not a doctor, I am unable to prescribe medications. If needed, I can give referrals.
Can you protect my privacy?
Yes, I comply with laws requiring me to protect your privacy. Your privacy is very important. Without knowing that privacy is protected, therapy might not be as effective as it can be.
When are you open?
I am open Tuesday to Saturday from 9am to 6:30pm.
Rates and insurance?
Please refer to this page.
My family/friend is suffering. What should I do?
If your family/friend is an adult, please have them contact me via this page. I cannot proceed with the process unless a potential client contacts me by themselves instead of their family/friends.
Do you speak other languages? Can you do therapy with that language?
I am bilingual in English and Japanese, and can provide therapy with both languages.
Can I see you for therapy even if I am in Japan?
Yes. Should you have any questions, please contact me via the form.
Is online therapy effective like in-person therapy?
Yes, research shows that online therapy can be as effective as in-person therapy.
What is your license?
The name of the license is Marriage and Family therapy. Therefore, you see LMFT after my name. LMFT stands for Licensed Marriage and Family therapist. If you see AMFT, it means Associate Marriage and Family Therapist, meaning they do not have a license yet. In order to have this license, you need to graduate from graduate school, finish 3000 hours of internship, pass two exams, and continue to take classes to renew license every two years.
Does that mean you only provide marriage therapy and family therapy?
This is a very common question. The answer is no. I can provide therapy for those who suffer from a variety of issues; however, my specialties are the following: adult depression, adult anxiety, sports injury, adult raised by toxic parents, autistic adult, and adolescents.