Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
We are happy to work with you to set up an arrangement that works for you. Below please find answers to some common questions:
Why should I consider therapy?
Are you experiencing distress?
Needing a safe environment in which to work through this?
Everyone experiences some distress at one time or another, and everyone has different needs in dealing with problems in their life. Sometimes these problems are in specific areas, such as problems in a relationship, grieving a loss, problematic behaviors, or concern about what others think of you. Other times problems can be broader, such as general dissatisfaction with one’s self or one’s life.
Most people can benefit from the support and expertise of a caring professional. Our commitment is to help you identify your strengths and use them to more effectively manage your emotional health.
A relationship with a therapist can become a safe place in which to address concerns freely because your therapist is not invested in your life in the same way as friends and family. This gives clients room to discuss and explore what is important to them more completely and empowers them to make the necessary choices and adjustments in their lives. In addition to being a safe place to discuss difficult and/or meaningful topics, a clinically trained therapist has knowledge about how you can address various difficulties in a way that maximizes your chances of success.
What's the difference between therapy &...
Therapeutic relationships are based on an egalitarian model of helping that works to reduce or eliminate power differentials between therapist and client as much as possible. This makes therapy different from a lot of other relationships in a person's life
So what's the difference between a therapist and...
...my best friend?
Friends, family members, mentors and partners are important parts of our support system. But they are also invested in our lives and our decisions in various ways. Those we share living space with are invested in what we decide to do about our personal hygiene or whether we pay bills. Those we spend all day with are invested in our mood because it may impact their own experience of the day. These are all natural and often positive, but may mean that these investment impact their ability to objectively assess our thoughts, goals and plans. The difference between this and a therapeutic relationship is that the latter exists in a defined space and time, with specific limitations around confidentiality. This means that a therapist, while caring deeply about your well-being, might not be personally invested in your decisions about work, relationships, etc, in the same way, allowing for some therapeutic objectivity in feedback.
...a sex worker?
Sex work is any type of labor where the explicit goal is to produce a sexual or erotic response in the client (SWOPusa.org). Therapists provide different services, as the goals of therapy are set in collaboration with the client, and generally oriented to some decrease in distress or increase in functioning. While sex is often a topic of discussion in therapy (just like the many other important areas of our holistic lives), talking with a therapist offers the opportunity to talk about sex in a non-sexualized context - to talk about meaning, importance, desire and more without expectation. This allows exploration away from socialized pressures and expectations, and the goal is to increase understanding and insight.
...a pro-dom ?
Therapists do not provide these services. If you are hoping for someone who will set rules with you and discuss arrangements like punishments and consequences, who will hold power over you, and to whom you wish to submit, you may want to consider seeking that kind of arrangement (with a dominant, professional or otherwise). In therapy, there would be no question of a client being punished or shamed, but rather the focus would be on working to build skills and resources to help you achieve whatever goals were set together. Should you wish to consider individual therapy to discuss your interest in kink/submission, how to approach getting this need met in your relationships, or personal growth and development, that is something that ourpractice provides, however that would be very different from a submissive relationship.
As a practice that works with many kinksters, we suggest that you learn about how to approach consent and boundary conversations when entering into any consensual power exchange relationship before entering a relationship (or even a scene) with any dominant. The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom is a useful resource for this,
Where are you located/can you do sessions?
That depends on what you need!
Our office is co-located with Massage Geeks, in a converted house in Marietta, GA - LINK TO MAPS. We offer in-person sessions, which are a great opportunity for self-care multitasking - you can do therapy, get a massage, and even shop at the Geek Apothecary & Mercantile store in the lobby.
We also offer services via telepsychology, AKA Video Sessions.
For this we use SecureVideo, which is an additional security layer over a Zoom platform, which is included in our PsyBooks EHR.
All of our clinicians can provide telepsychology services to anyone in the state of Georgia.
In addition, Dr. Kieran is a PsyPact licensed psychologist, who can provide services to anyone in any of the 31 (and growing) states that participate in the PsyPact Interjurisdictional Compact. For a map of those states, click here.
How long are sessions?
Therapy hours run approx. 45-50 minutes. This allows clinicians time to reflect, write notes, update your file, and attend to their own needs between sessions. If we are running late (which should rarely happen), we will attempt to adjust the hour so you get the full 45-50 minutes.
How much do sessions cost?
Our standard hourly fee is $200.00 (per 45-50 minute clinical hour). We also offer a sliding fee scale for private pay clients, which can slide as low as $90 per hour. The arrangements for this sliding scale are based on what you determine you are able to pay, the frequency of sessions you need, and your consultation with your therapist - for more information on this, just ask. Extended sessions will be billed by the time used, based on a multiplier of the hourly rate. All cancellations without at least 24 hours notice (including no-shows) will be billed at $50.
We can accept payment by debit or credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover). We can also accept flexible spending account cards that are set up to cover healthcare expenses.
Card payments will be processed via Square. This process collects and transmits encoded credit card information electronically, with industry standard security measures. For more information go to https://squareup.com/security/levels. You also have the option to pay via online invoice (sent through Square) – these invoices will be used for all session cancellation fees, overdue balances, as well as fees for all telepsychology services .
Do you take insurance?
We are not on any insurance panels. This means that we are not "in-network" for any insurance. Our practice is simply too small to employ an additional expert to navigate the paperwork and hours that it would take to make this happen. We have made a deliberate choice to keep our costs low to allow for a sliding fee-scale accessible to all clients, rather than pass this kind of expense on to clients.
However, we do have the ability to provide you with a receipt listing all the information that your insurance company needs in order for you to file a claim. You can ask for these after each session, or for a summary receipt every few months.
We also have the ability to file "out of network" claims for a limited number of insurance companies. Whether your insurance company will pay for an out of network claim depends on many things:
Do you have Out of Network Benefits (for mental health/therapy)? - call the number on the back of our insurance card to find out.
Have you met your Out of Network Deductible for the year? - also something your insurance company can tell you
What percentage of Out Of Network services does your insurance pay? - this determines how much of our standard rate you will be responsible for after insurance pays.
Does your insurance require pre-authorization for Out of Network psychologist visits? - also something your insurance company can tell you.
If they say yes, please ask them for the pre-authorization line phone number, and then send it to us with your full name, address, date of birth and insurance information, including a copy of your insurance card.
Is there paperwork?
Yes, but not too much, and is can all be done virtually. We use a system, PSYBooks, that was created specifically with psychologists and the privacy of their clients in mind. The benefit of this system is that it provides a platform for secure communications between clients and clinicians, by creating a client portal. There is information about the technical aspects of PSYBooks, as well as other information, available at www.psybooks.com.
Once we enter your contact information in PSYBooks you will receive an e-mail asking you to login and begin sharing your information. Once you have created your profile, your clinician will send you paperwork to sign (virtually) before your first sessions. In that system you can also send secure messages to your clinician when needed.