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The first question that therapists
hear most often when someone calls to find out about marriage
counseling is, "Do you take insurance?" The second question is, "How
much do you charge?" People ask these questions for two reasons:
first, because we live in a cost conscious world and money is
usually an issue with most folks; second, because people don't know
what else to ask. Although money is an important issue there are
other items to be considered. Below are some questions you might ask
and things to bear in mind when you make that initial phone call for
an appointment and decide to select a marriage counselor.
1. What state licenses does he/she
have? Most states issue professional licenses in Marriage and Family
Counseling, Psychology, and Social Work.
2. How long has he/she been licensed?
3. You should then give a general outline of your concerns with your
marriage and ask to speak to the counselor to see how he/she would
handle your situation.
4. What is the counselor's attitude in terms of answering your
questions? Does he/she listen well, have good answers to your
questions and display patience?
5. How long does it take for the counselor to return your call?
6. How will your partner feel about the counselor?
7. What provisions does the therapist have for emergencies? Your
situation may not be an emergent situation, but you never know. It's
nice to know that you have support if and when you need it. It's
also good to note how the counselor actually answers this question.
8. How did you feel after the call? You may need some time after the
phone call to reflect on how you felt about your contact with the
counselor. Talking to a counselor can be stressful. You may have
been very self-conscious about what you were saying and felt
pressured or overwhelmed. At the end of the conversation did you
feel both understood and comfortable?
9. Ask yourself if the counselor seemed to understand your
situation. If there is more than one area of concern involved, is
he/she an expert in that field as well? For example, if one partner
has an addiction problem or suffers from anxiety, is the counselor
an expert in these areas? If one of the partners has a problem with
being a workaholic, does he/she understand the corporate world?
10. Does the counselor have training in anger reduction? This is not
the same as anger management. People need to learn not just how to
manage their anger, but how to reduce their anger. Anger reduction
is a specific specialty and a very important issue in most
Dr. Marty Tashman has been in
practice for over 30 years. He believes that combining compassion
and common sense with formal training and experience is the most
effective way to help a couple deals with challenges they are
facing. Marty tells his clients that therapy should help change come
about during the very first session. Of course, problems are not
solved immediately, but every meeting should bring the couple to
learning how to become closer to each other. Relationships can be
"fixed", if both partners want things to work they have taken an
important step towards being a couple.
Dr. Marty holds a doctorate in Clinical Psychology; he is a licensed
Marriage Counselor, and a certified Social Worker. He holds a
master's degree in Counseling. He specializes in short term marriage
counseling. Dr. Marty also works with couples where one partner is
struggling with addiction.
Dr.Marty can be reached at: (732) 246-8484 or
He can be visited at: