-With Marcel Gamboa, Licensed Professional Counselor
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What happens during a therapy session?
In the first few sessions, the counselor typically listens to you and the issues that you want to discuss. As the sessions progress, the counselor will usually take a more active role and try to help you sort out your problems, or guide you in the direction you want to go.
Each client is different; some prefer to do most of the talking, while others would like the counselor to take a more educational approach. You may learn about topics such as stress management, how to cope with depression and anxiety, and communication skills.
Is it confidential?
Yes, but with some exceptions. Please read the HIPAA notice under the tab 'before your appointment'.
Do I have to talk about my childhood?
You don’t have to talk about anything that you don’t want to. The counselor may offer some suggestions for topics that may be relevant to your current struggles, but you, the client, set the pace of the sessions. Childhood issues and experiences - including positives ones - are often relevant to our thoughts, feelings and actions today, but not always.
I have a teenager who may need counseling, but he/she does not talk very much. How do I know if he/she will benefit from counseling?
I have worked with many teenagers who do not share much with parents, but who are eager to talk to a counselor. Even with serious issues (for example, behaviors problems, depression, poor grades, cutting, etc.), many teens get significantly better when they share their story and receive guidance from a neutral party.
How long does a session last?
Most regular sessions last 45-60 minutes.
How many sessions do I need?
Counseling is fairly solution-focused, so most people will have achieved sufficient benefits in about 8-10 sessions. However, some individuals have deeply-rooted issues or severe problems that may require more counseling.
Do you do couples counseling?
Yes, absolutely. It's important to note that most couples should plan for about 10-12 visits in order to have the best possibility of addressing all their issues and explore some of the psycho-educational nature of these sessions.
Do you have other counselors?
Yes, our other counselors are interns that bring in expertise in other area, including children and families. One of our counselors is Spanish speaking. The cost for a session with a counselor intern is $60 (no insurance accepted). See "Our counselors" for more information.
How do I know if counseling is for me? What if I don’t like to talk about my feelings?
Talking about feelings is an important part of counseling, but it’s not the only way of achieving progress. The counselor will help you find other ways of expressing yourself, while other times, an educational approach can work wonders. Most people will know within 3-4 sessions if therapy is beneficial and they decide from there whether to continue. For some, it’s an investment valued for the rest of their lives.
Will I need medication? Does the counselor prescribe medication?
Whether you may need medication to deal with your situation is something you can discuss with counselor. However, please note that the counselor is not licensed to write prescriptions, and you will need to follow with up with a psychiatrist or a doctor on your own.
Do you offer any type of specialization.
I primarily utilize cognitive-behavioral therapy, but other treatment modalities are also used. I am trained in EMDR, which is a highly successful treatment approach for trauma, anxiety, stress management, depression and many other issues .
Which age groups do you serve?
I specialize in preteens, adolescents and adults. Younger children are seen by our other counselors.
Is there a cancellation policy?
Unlike doctors who often double book patients, the appointment time at Life Cycles Counseling is set aside for you only. Therefore, we assess a $60 fee for all no-shows and cancellations within 24 hours of the appointment. You can view the full cancellation policy on the intake form under the 'before your appointment' tab.
How much does it cost?
Many insurance plans cover counseling services, minus your deductible or copay. If you pay out-of-pocket, the rate for individual visits is $110 for a 55-60 minute visit. Click the tab "Rates and Insurance" for more information.
Can I call for a consultation?
Yes, you may call 281-299-8607 for a free 10 minute consultation with the counselor if you have further questions.
Life Cycles Counseling 5870 Highway 6 N, Suite 310, Houston TX 77084 Phone: 281-299-8607