If you’re curious about seeing a counselor, you should read this. We’d like to tell you a little about how we do things at Anchoring Hope (locations in Abingdon, VA & Wise, VA) and also give you general information that can help you make the best decision for you.
At Anchoring Hope, we have several therapists ready to help with a variety of struggles. You can read some of the things we help with here. We do not prescribe medications, but instead offer talk therapy and numerous types of therapies to assist you or a loved one. Each therapist works with different struggles, ages, and clients. Therapists work with individuals, couples, and families.
At Anchoring Hope, we use a third party to accept some commercial insurances (Anthem BCBS, Aetna, United, Cigna). That means, an insurance that is through an employer or the marketplace. Unfortunately, we are not in network with medicaid or medicare. Our clients must live in Virginia to use insurance benefits. We also provide private pay sessions for those without or who do not want to use insurance.
We have two locations in Abingdon, Virginia and Wise, Virginia, but we can also do telehealth across the state of Virginia depending on the client’s personal preference. When we say telehealth, that means video sessions through our private portal. The client must be physically located in the state of Virginia for each session because our licenses are state dependent; however, that may be changing next year.
In addition to counseling, we also develop and present trainings on various topics. In the past we have worked with social services, hospitals, community agencies, nonprofits, and schools to provide training topics.
To get started with Anchoring Hope Counseling, you can fill out our online form at bit.ly/ahchopeq or call us at 276-298-5034.
Now, for more general information on finding a good therapist!
First, you want to make sure your therapist/counselor is either licensed or working toward licensure as a resident. As a licensed therapist, that means the person received a master’s degree, completed about a 2-year residency, passed a fancy test, and is registered with the licensing board. As a resident, they are obtaining hours as a resident and have a supervisor who helps build their skills. Letters after a counselor’s name to look for are LPC, LCSW, or LMFT; each has a different focus but some overlap.
Different degrees allow for different specializations, but also, we must have continuing education. There are many areas of mental health therapists can go into, so if you know what you are struggling with, it’s a good idea to make sure your therapist has experience treating those issues. You cannot take a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to a therapist.
Now, the most important consideration when seeking a therapist: finding someone you feel you can open up to and have a good client-therapist relationship with; that is one of the biggest indicators of success in therapy. Sometimes that will require having an initial session or two with a therapist to see if you mesh well, but never feel bad about finding someone else if needed.
When people call us for therapy, I tell them to please let me know if they feel it’s not a good fit because we understand that sometimes it simply isn’t, and that’s okay! We won’t be offended and want to support you in your journey, and if that takes going through several therapists, then by golly, we’ll help you out as much as we can. I can’t speak for other agencies, but that is our perspective.
Depending on your area, you may run into waitlists or limited availability/specialization. My general suggestion would be to reach out as soon as you begin considering counseling because it may be a while before you can get in. Too often, we put our mental health on the back burner leading to more intense crashes over time. If we work to maintain it more regularly, we can lead more centered lives.
If you want to consider us, great! Call 276-298-5034 or go to bit.ly/ahchopeq to get started. If you’d like to look around more, you can find some (not all) therapists on psychologytoday.com where you can filter results by insurance type and issues. Either way, we wish you the best on your search & hope you find healing in your journey.