Frequently Asked Questions
You may have questions about counseling and/or trauma counseling. Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions. If you have further questions, we invite you to call us at 310-720-8200 so we can talk about what you may need.
1. I’ve tried a lot of things to feel better. How do I know this is going to work?
Trauma can be confusing, stubborn or frightening. You have probably tried a variety of things to work through it. With talk therapy alone, it can be hard to gain progress. This is because trauma lives in both the body and mind and talk engages the thinking part of the brain. The most effective way to release trauma is through a combination of talk, sensation, eye movements and other means of accessing the traumatic material. Our mission is to help people be released from trauma, become stronger and take action on what they want to do. While no center can make guarantees, we can tell you as trauma experts, we have helped hundreds of people who have told us they feel more ease and more capable in their lives after being in counseling with us. Along with way, we will be asking for your feedback to find out how things are going, how your needs are being met and how we can adjust if a better approach is needed.
2. Am I going to have to go back and re-experience all of the bad things that happened to me?
Only if it is what you want. You set the pace. Our only goal is to help you feel better. Some people like talking about the past, others do not. We can work with you in ways that feel best for you. You have choices. It will not help you get better faster if you experience all the bad things in an unstructured way. We want to “clean out the wound” gently and create healing for you to move forward. For a therapeutic benefit, we provide short and long-term treatment. Like most things, what your put into the process will determine what you get out of it.
3. I’ve tried therapy before, how is this different?
There are lots of different types of therapy available, however to release trauma, specific modalities are needed. Somatic therapies bring in the body so not only do we talk about what is going on, we attend to your breathing, heart rate and teach self-soothing techniques which are especially helpful if you should become triggered or overwhelmed. EMDR helps put past memories in the past so they do not intrude upon your daily life. Brainspotting works with the eyes to reach the subcortical regions of the brain where trauma is held to give context to the past and takes away its power over you. For more in depth explanations of these modalities, please see the Counseling Services tab.
Whether it was a one-time incident or took place over time, we can help you. We are collaborative in our approach so we will create a plan that works for you. We have more tools in our tool belts than others and we look forward to helping you with whatever is going on.
4. Is your staff good at what they do?
Yes. We only treat trauma and anxiety. We are excellent at what we do. We have the training, expertise and experience unique to dealing with helping people recover from traumatic incidents and anxiety. We have helped people recovery from a variety of traumatic experiences including growing up in chaotic or non-responsive homes, verbal, physical and sexual abuse, mixed messages from parents or caregivers, alcoholism, loss of family members, birth trauma giving birth or being born, accidents, attack, rape, bullying, workplace difficulties, abandonment, misattunement by caregivers, neglect, adoption and more.
We care deeply about our clients. We care about what you have gone through or are going through. In some cases, we have gone through a similar ordeal. Our goal is to offer comfort, help you process your personal story, give you tools and help you move through whatever is holding you back.
5. Do you work with other issues besides trauma?
Yes! We are here to help with issues related to living life. Whether it is the relationship with yourself or how you are coping, we are interested in helping you get clarity on how you are taking care of yourself. If you are regulating yourself with drugs, alcohol, shopping or other behavior means to feel better – and you feel this is not working – we can help. If you are suffering with anxiety, low self-esteem, depression, or grief, we understand and can give you tools and skills to work your way out of these feelings. Our goal is to help you feel better about whatever it is you are dealing with. In addition to therapy, we may ask you to read articles or books or do some writing. All of these suggestions will be based on what is a fit for you
6. What if I have more questions?
Please feel free to call us for answers to other questions you may have.
7. How do I get started?
Call us at 310-720-8200 or fill out the form on the Contact tab, whichever helps you feel more comfortable. Once you call, we can discuss your needs and when you would like to schedule an appointment. It is an easy process, once you come in, we will have a conversation, assess your needs and determine which services will be helpful. After that, we will put a treatment plan together and begin to work on the issues that are in your way.