FAQ

Learn About Therapy

When Do I Know It’s Time to Get Help?

Therapy can be useful at any point in time and can provide helpful insight for success and growth.

Signs that let you know it is time to seek help is when you feel like you cannot go on anymore or you have lost interest in things you used to find joy in.  It might feel as though you are not able to go about your day as usual and find yourself in a crying spell and not sure what is wrong.  You just feel like you are not yourself anymore and no matter what you have tried to do, nothing can get you back to feeling better.  It is hard to pick up the phone and ask for help.  We upkeep so many things in our lives from our cars, hair, and houses.  Talking to a mental health provider is an investment in ourselves and the future to better keep the machine well oiled and avoid as many breakdowns as we can.

What is a Clinical Social Worker?

Clinical Social Workers are psychotherapists and a specialty practice area of social work licensed by the State of California.  All Clinical Social Workers hold a Masters degree from a state board accredited university and are required to complete a minimum of 3000 hours of counseling experience before becoming eligible for licensure.

Clinical Social Workers focus on assessment, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental illness, emotional, and behavioral challenges with the goal of enhancing and maintaining the physical, physiological, social, and spiritual well-being of individuals, families, and communities.  Clinical Social Workers can perform services and have experience in a variety of settings including private practice, hospitals, community mental health, primary care, and agencies.

Social Work blends the individual with the social contexts and constructs we all live in, from the cultural and racial to historical and institutional frames we operate within.  Additionally, I specialize in multiple frameworks focused on gender, sexuality, and relationship diversity, as you’ll find elsewhere on my site.

How Does Therapy Work?

Therapy helps you navigate your feelings, orient your thoughts differently, and as a result, build better behaviors and relationships with yourself and loved ones.  You are not broken so there is nothing to be “fixed.”  We are simply uncovering and dusting off already existing strengths that will help you learn new skills to take on the challenges you are facing today.

Successful therapy may not mean you are “cured” of all of your ailments but that you are feeling some relief, enjoying life more, and have accomplished the goals you originally set.  You are then able to assess if setting new goals is in your best interest or moving on to using your time more wisely outside of the therapy room, which I would assist you with when the time comes.  Therapy does not last the rest of your life and can end at any time.

What is Sex Therapy?

Sex Therapy is like any other therapy I do, which is talk therapy, where we will cover the topics of sex and intimacy in more detail than usual.  There is no touch involved whatsoever and we move and the pace you set.

What Can I do About How Expensive Therapy Is?

I offer a sliding scale based on income and ability to pay.  If you require support beyond that, inform me and I will do my best to work with you.  Options include having fewer sessions per month, shortening sessions, group sessions, a reduced fee under certain circumstances, or referral to another practitioner.  If a reduced fee is agreed upon, it will be adjusted upwards as your financial situation improves.

Therapy can be expensive when looking at individual sessions versus looking at the total value of treatment overall.  Individuals who are depressed or overtaken by anxiety, have relational distress, suffer from creative blocks, or struggle to identify where they are going in life become more productive and make more money as a result of therapy and its benefits.  Although therapy does not directly affect a person’s finances, it can drastically impact a person’s well-being and improve their way of life.

Learn About the Office 

How do I Get More Information or Schedule an Appointment?

Feel free to call me at (619) 623-4457 or email me at therapy@juliaschiffmanmsw.com.  I will usually ask that we schedule a free 10-15 minute phone consultation to make sure we are a good match.

Where Is Your Office Located?

9815 Carroll Canyon Rd. #101
San Diego, CA 92131

What Is Your Fee?

$115 for individual session (50 minutes)

$165 for couple’s session (80 minutes)

I offer a sliding scale based on income and ability to pay.  If you require support beyond that, inform me and I will do my best to work with you.  Options include having fewer sessions per month, a reduced fee under certain circumstances, or referral to another practitioner.  If a reduced fee is agreed upon, it will be adjusted upwards as your financial situation improves.

How Do I Pay for Therapy?

Payment is due at the time of service. To facilitate the payment process, you will be asked for your credit card or health savings/flex account information when completing the new client forms.  You may also pay by cash or check.

Will My Insurance Cover Therapy?

Depending on your insurance benefits, you may be eligible for reimbursement for a portion of your fees. A monthly statement will be provided to you that includes the information, including a mental health diagnosis, that insurance companies require. You may want to check first with your carrier to get the answers to these questions:

What are my mental or behavioral health benefits?

What is my deductible and has it been met?

How many sessions per year does my health insurance cover?

What is the coverage amount per therapy session?

What is my coverage for out-of-network providers?

Is approval required from my primary care physician?

Is pre-authorization for treatment required?

To find a provider who is in your insurance plans HMO or PPO:

Call the number on the back of your insurance card and ask your insurance company for a list of therapists they work with.  You can also use the therapist finder at Psychology Today or call San Diego Psychological Association for a referral.

What Happens if I Need to Cancel?

If you need to cancel or reschedule, please do so at least two days in advance of your appointment. The charge for cancellations made on the same day as your appointment is 1/2 of the session fee. The charge for failure to keep an appointment without notification is the full session fee.

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