Choosing to start therapy can be daunting and sometimes feel like you are lost at sea. Maybe you're not even sure which questions to ask. That is totally normal, and ok.  Here are some questions and answers that I've compiled to help you navigate the process. If you have more questions, please contact me and I will try to answer them all for you.

What is psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy is typically known as talk therapy. The American Psychological Association defines Psychotherapy as the informed and intentional application of clinical methods and interpersonal stances derived from established psychological principles for the purpose of assisting people to modify behaviors, cognitions, emotions, and/or other personal characteristics in directions deem desirable.

Interesting fact: The term psychotherapy is derived from the Ancient Greek word 'psyche'  (meaning breath; spirit; soul), and 'therapeia' (meaning healing; medical treatment).

Psychotherapy is a deeply intimate journey that happens between therapist and client in the therapy room. Through the safety of an empathic witness, individuals are able to explore unconscious dynamics and processes that may be driving dysfunction. Basically, I find that psychotherapy can act as an incubator for one's psychic or spiritual growth.

What do you mean by somatic psychotherapy?

Somatic means deriving from the body. Somatic psychotherapy pulls from body based and shamanic healing practices in the context of talk therapy. Most therapies focus on tending to the mind in isolation.  Somatic psychotherapy doesn't consider the mind to work by itself, but rather WITH the body. A somatic approach fosters organic and holistic healing. Think about it... is your head a part of your body? Of course it is! Somatic psychotherapy explores the interplay between the body and mind as a method of healing. The focus is on noticing body sensations as a way to gain awareness and thus engage with your physical/emotional states instead of being hijacked by them.

“To state this more succinctly, awareness of the body’s state influences how we organize our lives. Knowing your body strengthens your mind.” 

Daniel J. Siegel, MD

Will I feel better?

The hope is that therapy will provide you with relief from symptoms that are causing you distress. Sometimes therapy can be challenging, and you may not always walk out of the office "feeling better". Healing is sometimes painful.

Ever had a sprained ankle? My goodness does the ankle hurt when it is healing, sometime it is hard to walk on. If the ankle is properly cared for, eventually the pain subsides. Therapy can be similar. Sometimes the process may feel like you aren't getting anywhere or you are in more emotional distress then when you started... this is a very normal reaction to therapy. Most people are defended against their emotional vulnerabilities. And if therapy is working, defenses start to dissipate, leaving you face to face with your core self; all in service of healing.  In reflection, clients usually see how much growth they were able to access by tending to their pain with an empathetic witness.

Some clients do come in and feel better from day one. It all depends on your personal journey and what it is you are needing.

“The way to the goal seems chaotic and interminable at first, and only gradually do the signs increase that it is leading anywhere. The way is not straight but appears to go round in circles”

-Carl Jung (CW 12)

Do you take insurance?

I am an out of network provider for most PPO insurance policies and am happy to create a superbill for reimbursement of services.

Otherwise, I have chosen to not work directly with insurance companies in order to provide high quality services that maintain complete confidentiality. I take a smaller number of clients than most therapists in order to mindfully tailor my approach to each client.

Important questions to ask your insurance carrier if you plan to use your out of network benefits:

  • What are my out-of-network outpatient mental health benefits?
  • What is the coverage amount per therapy session?
  • How many sessions per year am I cover for?
  • Does my plan restrict coverage for any particular mental health diagnoses?

If you have any questions about this process feel free to contact me (562) 832-2531 for additional help.


What are your fees for service?

Individual 50 minute session = $195

Couples 50 minute session = $250

75 minute sessions are also available


Important Notice for "Out of Network" and "Private Pay" Clients: "The Good Faith Estimate"

In accordance with the Public Health Services Act 2799B-6, (“No Surprises”), health care providers and health care facilities are required to inform uninsured and self-pay individuals of their right to receive a Good Faith Estimateexplaining how much their medical and mental health care will cost.

Under the law, health care providers need to give patients who don't have insurance or who are not using their insurance an estimate of the expected charges for medical services, including psychotherapy services.

You have the right to receive a Good Faith Estimate for the total expected cost of any non-emergency healthcare services, including psychotherapy services.

You can ask your health care provider, and any other provider you choose, for a Good Faith Estimate before you schedule a service.

If you receive a bill that is at least $400 more than your Good Faith Estimate, you can dispute the bill. Make sure to save a copy or picture of your Good Faith Estimate.

For questions or more information about your right to a Good Faith Estimate, visit