Anthony and Stephen Ragusea

Licensed Psychologists

1901 Fogarty Ave.
Suite 5
Key West, FL 33040

I believe that people should know as much as possible before choosing a therapist, because therapy is more effective when there is a good "fit" between the client and therapist. So I have decided to share some of my philosophy about therapy and what you as a potential client can expect from me. I would also encourage you to ask me any questions about my approach that you still have after reading this.

I believe that therapy is a collaborative effort. In therapy, we are working together to solve a problem. Because every person and every problem is a little different, I try to tailor my approach to best fit your needs. For example, you may be interested in getting some information or advice. Or, perhaps you are starting down a long and difficult personal journey and could use a companion for support and guidance. Or, perhaps you are not even quite sure what the problem is but you know you need help. Our time together may be brief, perhaps only one or two sessions. We may need to spend months or even years working to solve your problem. In general, though, I have found that by keeping our goals clear and realistic it usually takes less than ten sessions for clients to see significant improvement.

In our first session together, I will be interested in finding out more about you and what brought you to my office. I will talk with you about confidentiality and under what conditions the things we talk about can or must be shared with others. I will ask you about what you hope to gain from therapy, and find out more about what unique strengths you have that can help us to solve your problem. Sometimes it is easy but sometimes it takes time to figure out whether therapy can be helpful for a particular problem and, if so, how. What I can assure you is that you will always be in control of what we work on and what we do.

The therapist-client relationship is a special and powerful kind of relationship, and for that reason I will treat my relationship with you with care and respect. I feel honored and privileged when people share their personal history or problems with me, and I strive to make myself worthy of that privilege. I will be as honest and trustworthy as I can be, and will always act in what I believe to be your best interests. I am not perfect and may make mistakes, and you may feel free to point them out when I do. If you find yourself having concerns about your therapy, please let me know and we will try to fix the situation if possible. If I believe I am not the best person to help you with your problem, I will help you find someone who can.

Here are some things you can do to help make our work as productive as possible: 1) Come to therapy with a willingness to try something different. This may sound easy, but doing something different can actually be difficult and even seem frightening. 2) Understand that improving your problem may require you to temporarily feel worse before feeling better (think of what happens when you break a bone--setting the bone is painful but necessary to make it heal properly). 3) Most of the progress you will make will happen between sessions. Be willing to try assignments or homework between the times we meet. 4) Pay attention to the times when the problem is not a problem. Most problems are never around 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. Even when they are, there is always a variation in the severity of the problem (for example, you may feel depressed every day, but you may feel more or less depressed at different times of the day.) Notice what is different about those times when the problem is less of a problem. That's valuable information that can help us more quickly find a solution!