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Have you been contemplating starting counseling to help with problems in your relationships, mood, understanding yourself or other issues? Personal and confidential counseling can help you to achieve that goal. I am a licensed psychologist with the state of Virginia with a doctorate in Counseling Psychology. I have been licensed since 2001, and began graduate training in 1994. My practice helps clients use their strengths and abilities to change their lives- what psychologists called "positive psychology." Counseling should be a positive and empowering experience. Counseling can bring hope, healing, improved life skills, insight and even wisdom in your life.
Does therapy work? In fact, there is 50 years of research that demonstrates that psychotherapy is helpful with a wide range of personal and psychological problems. I follow that research and I also am a leader in the field in participating in that research. It's important to me that I am on the cutting edge of what works in psychotherapy. Many psychologists and counselors are trained in one approach, and use that approach throughout their career. What is important is that you find a psychologist who is aware of the research relevant to your problems and is able to bring all of that information to bear in helping you quickly improve.
Is therapy worth the time, effort and expense? Therapy is not easy, either in time effort or expense. It will require an investment. You should consider if you are willing to make a commitment. However, people often underestimate the cost of not improving the situation if their life, both psychologically and financially. Psychological problems like depression, relationship problems, ADHD or anxiety. affect career advancement, can lead to expensive divorce, cost you friendships, lead to decreased physical health or less attention to caring for children and your home.
Why a psychologist in private practice instead of a managed care provider? There are many advantages to seeing a psychologist in private practice. Managed care and insurance requires that you have a psychiatric diagnosis shared with your insurance company to obtain services. There have been occasions where a history of a psychiatric diagnosis in a medical record can cause unforeseen negative consequences in career or healthcare options. Many services are not generally covered by insurance such as couples counseling, parenting issues, career counseling, education-related testing, or personal growth counseling or coaching. With the high deductibles for many, the cost of psychotherapy with a provider of your choice in private practice can be close or equivalent to your cost within network. Insurance companies often have high deductibles or co-pays, and few covered sessions. If you look at your coverage you may find the difference between private pay and insurance-pay is small with all the advantages of the psychologist working only for your needs. Many of the better psychologists work out of network of insurance due to all of these issues.
What about privacy? My practice not only follows the standards of privacy for all psychologists, but also has some extra privacy. I keep my clinical notes on paper which prevent any chance of "hacking" or accidental loss due to data corruption. My office is also my academic office as a professor so anyone in the hallway would never know if you are seeing me for academic reasons or clinical meetings. I work outside of insurance as an out-of-network provider. Since I work out of network no insurance company can ever audit my clinical files. I also do not have staff who manage files, I work with your files personally. Some people have positions, work or situations where this level of privacy is appreciated.
* I am legally and ethically unable to provide psychological advice, diagnosis, or assessments via email to people who are not my patients. If you are in need of immediate assistance call 911 or your medical doctor for an immediate referral for care. Email is best used to request an appointment.
WHO IS DR. RIPLEY?
- PROFESSOR OF CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY AT REGENT UNIVERSITY (1999- PRESENT) TEACHING DOCTORAL STUDENTS IN CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY
- THE AUTHOR OF A BOOK "COUPLE THERAPY: A NEW HOPE FOCUSED APPROACH" AND DOZENS OF ARTICLES ON COUNSELING (COMPLETE VITA HERE)
- SUPERVISOR AND TRAINER OF DOZENS OF COUNSELORS AND PSYCHOLOGISTS, DIRECTOR OF THE MMATE CENTER AND COUPLES TRAINING LAB
- USE OF EMPIRICALLY SUPPORTED TREATMENTS FOR ALL PROBLEMS
- EXPERT IN TAILORING TREATMENT TO RELIGIOUS OR SPIRITUAL ISSUES- FREQUENT PRESENTER TO CHURCH AND RELIGIOUS GROUPS
FOR REQUESTS FOR PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES CALL 757.354.4132.