How do I make an appointment?
If you think counseling through Westminster Counseling Center would be helpful to you, please call 612.332.7743 to make an appointment. You may choose one of our counselors by reading about them in the Our Counselors section of this website and then calling 612.332.7743 and their extension. The counselor will return your call and answer any questions. Each counselor sets up his/her own appointments. You may also contact our Executive Director, Margaret McCray, at extension 222 with any questions and she can suggest which counselor may be the most appropriate fit for you. Each appointment is 50 minutes. If you have need of further or other professional help, we will make an appropriate referral.
Do I have to be a member of Westminster Presbyterian Church to receive counseling?
No. We see many people from the community who hear about us from friends or clergy or find us through our web site.
Do I have to be a Christian or a Presbyterian to use the counseling center's services?
No. Although our therapists are all ordained in Christian denominations (not just Presbyterian), we welcome people of any or no faith. We are respectful of our clients' spiritual foundations as long as those beliefs are not doing harm to the client's mental health and relationships. Several of us on the staff have found other faith traditions to be enriching to our understanding of who we are as Christians. For more, download the column Are We a Christian Counseling Center?
What role does religion or spirituality play in the counseling sessions?
Each therapist finds his or her personal grounding in their spiritual faith and while we believe that our lives and relationships find their meaning in profound mysteries of love and connection that are often best discussed in faith language, we do not impose our own beliefs on others. We are open to addressing our clients' faith questions and concerns. We use prayer in the session if the client requests it. Some people come to us because of our faith base; many come because they trust us to respect them and their needs.
Do you accept any forms of insurance?
We will file an insurance claim for any insurance carrier, but we cannot guarantee that it will be accepted for payment. Our therapists are providers for Blue Cross Blue Shield and Cigna. We can collect out of network from a number of other carriers.
How does your sliding fee scale work? What if I can't afford the fee you suggest?
The counseling center is committed to making our counseling available to all who can benefit from it. If you do not have insurance and have few financial resources, we will work together to find a fee that will be acceptable to you. But we expect every client to pay some amount.
Would I be committed to make a certain number of appointments, or can I just come for one appointment to see how comfortable I am with it?
We are happy to see you for an initial appointment to assess whether we can be of help to you. We want you to feel comfortable returning as well. We usually charge for this first session, but that is up to the discretion of the therapist. If we decide together that it is not a good fit, we would give you recommendations of other resources.
How flexible are your hours? Do you have evening appointments?
Each therapist makes his or her own hours. However, among us we are able to offer times from early morning to as late as 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. Occasionally we are also able to make weekend appointments.
I've used antidepressants in the past, but was never able to get the prescription to work quite right. It seems like they could help, but I'm nervous to try again. Do you have anyone who could work with me on anti-depressant options?
We are not medical doctors, but we meet weekly with consulting psychiatrists with whom we share the medication questions and concerns of our clients. We can help you find the information and services you need for proper medication.
Do you do counseling with children? Or teens? If not, would you be willing to give us a recommendation on whom we might see instead?
We do see teens, but are less likely to work with very young children. We will give you a referral to an appropriate professional.
I see that your counselors have LMFT, LPC, and LICSW after their names. What do these letters stand for? Is there a difference? And does it affect what type of counseling they do?
These are licensing boards in the state of Minnesota who grant licenses based on the education and experience of the therapist. LMFT stands for Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist; LPC stands for Licensed Professional Counselor; and LICSW stands for Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. All licenses connote a person who has sufficient education and knowledge to help individuals, couples and families deal with mental health and relationship issues.
I'm concerned about traffic and parking downtown. Do you have free parking?
The church has a surface lot on Marquette Ave. between 12th and 13th streets. It is open free of charge to anyone using the services of the counseling center.
How can I be notified of when and where you'll be holding education sessions or group sessions? Can I get on some kind of email notification list?