ASK MICAH:

Individual Session
I will meet with you to determine what brought you in, what has worked or not worked for you in the past, and what your goals are for yourself and your expectations for our work together. I will not ask you irrelevant questions or things that do not pertain to your situation. I will ask a lot of questions that you may or may not know the answer to, and we will begin to formulate a rough draft plan together. The plan is a moving target, and may change at any time if new developments happen, or we need to shift focus or priorities. I will give you a rationale for all of my recommendations, and ask for your permission to ask sensitive questions. We go at your pace.

Couples Session
All three of us will meet together initially. I’m interested in your relationship history as told by each of you and will ask you how you first met, an approximate timeframe of when you became serious with each other, and how you each viewed your relationship progression. Next, I’ll ask each partner to tell me what brought them in using their own words. It’s important that I get each person’s point of view. From there, we may meet separately or together, it all depends on what brought you in and what you would like to get out of session. For connection, communication, and conflict management issues, most of our work will be done all together, in the same room. I’ll ask the couple to have a typical conversation as though I was not in the room to assess their communication style and pattern. I’ll ask more questions, give some education, observe more, and begin to formulate a plan that works for all parties. For couples coming for affair and infidelity recovery, I will likely want to speak to each party separately over the phone before I accept them as clients. Couples therapy is contraindicated if there is an ongoing affair, so this activity would need to stop before I could start helping the couple heal. If the couple then comes in for therapy, most of our work will be done together, in the same room.

This is a common scenario. There are several different approaches to consider. One strategy is to have a phone consultation with myself either with both parties or the hesitant party to ask any and all questions about my background, experience, approaches, and what to expect. Sometimes this will ease the anxiety. Feel welcome to point them in the direction of my videos, blogs, or Facebook page which may allow them to get more familiar with my couple- friendly, unbiased style.

A better approach would be in-person with a stipulation to ease any pressure. Invite the hesitant partner to come to couples therapy only as support to you. Make an agreement that they can be in the role of observer and supporter only. If they are unsure about therapy, or fearful that the Therapist may ask them too many questions, or other pre-conceived negative notions an offer of amnesty for the first session might allow them to test the waters in an environment without pressure and allow them to come in and get familiar with my friendly, unbiased approach. They can then make a decision based on their actual experience. Knowledge is power.

A third approach is to come to counseling on your own. Most relationship issues are a dynamics of give and take, and I can work with you to identify some of the relationship patterns that you may be able to affect by gaining insight into your part of the dynamic.

es, absolutely. I welcome any and all parties that are interested in a healthy, happy connection with another. This includes LGBTQIA+, and all relationship statuses.
The good news is while your situation is understandably difficult for you, it is probably not new or unique to me. I will assess your relationship, its various strengths and vulnerabilities, and give you my recommendations in a caring, thoughtful, and honest manner. Whether you choose to follow my recommendations is always up to you, and you can change your mind at any time. Most people benefit from the insight and feedback I provide. While not all couples decide to stay together over the long term, nearly all individuals believe that the process of understanding themselves and their relationship better, what was and wasn’t working, and what they need in the future helped them feel less frustrated, stuck, and drained so that they could move forward with their lives.
Good question. For this issue, a phone consultation is a good idea. Couples therapy is contraindicated for an ongoing affair, so I will need to ask if the affair/s have ended. If that is the case, we can meet together. It is natural and expected for either party to feel ambivalent, angry, hopeless, frustrated, scared, resentful, or even relieved, hopeful, and ready to put it behind them. We will meet together to discuss your relationship history, and I will ask questions about your respective view points on your relationship and your connection to each other .and Infidelity is a sensitive issue, and I have to balance getting important data, with how honest each partner is ready to be as well as protecting the non-affair partner from any potential blame or perceived blame. To that end, I may ask permission from both of you to have the non-affair partner to step out of the room while I ask some questions to determine what style of affair it was (there are three major styles, all with different implications for healing), and many questions to determine if there were any potential root cause/s that we need to address individually or as a couple.
Most of our work for couples will be done together. There may be times that either I will ask for your permission to meet with you individually, or you may ask to meet with me individually. In either case, I will explain my rationale and you are able to accept or reject my recommendations.
I have a list of recommended topics for discussion. It depends on what you are interested in accomplishing and the dynamics between the couple. For couples looking only for prevention with no major issues with communication, connection, or conflict, most couples can get through two to five 80 minute sessions. For couples that come with areas to address, an average course of sessions would be three to five 80 minute sessions, with suggested 50 minute follow up as the couple and myself see fit. If you are working within time constraints, etc please let me know so I can prioritize for you what is most pressing, what can be assigned as homework, and what can be addressed at a later date.

All information disclosed within sessions and the written records pertaining to those sessions are confidential and may not be revealed to anyone without your written permission, except where disclosure is required by law. If you choose to use your health insurance for reimbursement, please consider the following on insurance and confidentiality, diagnosis, and control of treatment:

Confidentiality: All insurance companies require some information about the reason for psychological treatment in order to process your claim. In addition, managed care plans often require detailed information regarding the problem for which you are seeking help, history, symptoms, family life, work life, and so on. The information is entered into increasingly large information systems, and current regulations are not strong in protecting confidentiality.

Control of Treatment: Managed care companies may use the information to decide if treatment is medically necessary, what kind of therapy is approved, and, later, if it should continue. Many of the insurance company employees who make these decisions have limited training, and of course have never met with you.

Psychiatric Diagnosis: Health insurance is designed to pay for the treatment of illness. Therefore, a psychiatric diagnosis code must be given before most insurance companies will pay.
When Disclosure Is Required By Law: Some of the circumstances where disclosure is required by the law are: where there is a reasonable suspicion of child, dependent or elder abuse or neglect; where a client presents a danger to self, to others, to property, or is gravely disabled or when client’s family members communicate to me (Ms. Brady) that the client presents a danger to others.

When Disclosure May Be Required: Disclosure may be required pursuant to a legal proceeding by or against you. If you place your mental status at issue in litigation initiated by you, the defendant may have the right to obtain the psychotherapy records and/or my testimony. In couple and family therapy, or when different family members are seen individually, even over a period of time, confidentiality and privilege do not apply between the couple or among family members, unless otherwise agreed upon. I will use my clinical judgment when revealing such information and will discuss this with you should it become relevant during your treatment. I will not release records to any outside party unless authorized to do so by all adult family members who were part of the treatment.

Emergencies: If there is an emergency during our work together, or if I become concerned about your personal safety, I may contact the person whose name you have provided on the biographical sheet. This includes the possibility of you injuring someone else. My action of using your emergency contact would be for the sole purpose of ensuring that you receive proper psychiatric care, to prevent you from injuring yourself or others and to ensure that you receive the proper medical care. I would abide by the limits of the law for disclosure of information about you in such a situation. When possible, I will make every effort to make you aware of the possibility of such a situation and would inform you if an emergency release if information occurred, even after termination.

Physical intimacy, sexuality, and body issues may be new for you to discuss, but they are not new for me. When I begin to ask questions that will help me formulate a plan for you, I will respect your right to use the terms that you feel comfortable with, and to go at your pace, not mine. I will only ask questions that directly pertain to the issue at hand. Some couples prefer that I lead the discussion so they only have to give minimal answers, and others want to describe the issue with their own voice. I welcome either approach. You can expect to have me give lots of education, some readings and/or homework assignments to think about and/or practice, and a collaborative approach. Clients will discuss items in my office, and practice any physical exercises in the privacy and comfort of your own home.

As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, my professional services do qualify for patient reimbursement under most insurance plans. Coverage varies widely from policy to policy, so you may want to review your benefits to determine your expected reimbursement. I am considered “out-of-network.”
Most insurance companies will not reimburse specifically for “marriage counseling,” “couples counseling,” or “relationship counseling.” The procedure code I use for couples that is generally reimbursable is called “conjoint psychotherapy.” This procedure code is 908.47. Use this language when inquiring with your insurance about reimbursement for couples counseling.

My services are provided directly to you, and your payment is made directly to me at the time of each session. If you decide to use your insurance, you can file for reimbursement with your insurance carrier, using the statement I will provide.
However, before making the decision to use your insurance coverage to reimburse you for therapy, please consider the following:

Confidentiality: All insurance companies require some information about the reason for psychological treatment in order to process your claim. In addition, managed care plans often require detailed information regarding the problem for which you are seeking help, history, symptoms, family life, work life, and so on. The information is entered into increasingly large information systems, and current regulations are not strong in protecting confidentiality.

Control of Treatment: Managed care companies may use the information to decide if treatment is medically necessary, what kind of therapy is approved, and, later, if it should continue. Many of the insurance company employees who make these decisions have limited training, and of course have never met with you.

Psychiatric Diagnosis: Health insurance is designed to pay for the treatment of illness. Therefore, a psychiatric diagnosis code must be given before most insurance companies will pay. Please feel welcome to contact me with specific questions about security clearances.

Please bring your Client-Clinician Agreement, Client data sheet/s, method of payment, and something to take notes with and/or place handouts in.
I am licensed in MD and DC. For clients outside of this area, you may choose to use me as a “Life Coach” which has different parameters than as a Psychotherapist. Your sessions would be privacy- protected through the use of e-Therapi, which specializes in HIPAA friendly long-distance technology. For couples in which one partner is coming in person, and the other is remote, please have the in-person partner bring their preferred laptop or iPad to use. For individuals, I will contact you through e-Therapi. My hours, payment information, and forms are the same for distance clients.
Click here to tell me about your event, audience, and timeframe.
Workshops are generally available monthly or bimonthly with a convenient weekend format. Click here (workshop info page) for more information on workshops. No, you do not have to share your relationship issues or concerns with other group members or even the Provider.
As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, my work with you is talk-therapy based. If you are seeing another Provider for couples, individual, or medication management, you can either choose to sign a release of information that would allow me to work with them in a collaborative manner, or keep this information to yourself. You and I will decide what information will be shared with the Provider and why. You will have the opportunity to accept or reject my recommendation, or add, change, or modify what is determined to share. You can change your mind about the release of information at any time by communicating your privacy preferences to me.

Unanswered Questions? Get in Touch Below.

MICAH BRADY

Clinical Social Worker
Psychotherapist
Couples and Intimacy Specialist
Serving D.C., Maryland and Virginia

PHONE: 240-408-4048
EMAIL: msbradycounseling@gmail.com
WEB: www.mbradycounseling.com

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