Parent Information & Resources

As parents, you have questions about what is good, normal, or safe for your children. Below, you can find resources that address some of the common issues we are often asked about.
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Desirae Contreras MS, NCC, LPC

Licensed Professional Counselor

Samantha Taylor, MA, LPC

Licensed Professional Counselor

1702 Rodd Field Rd.
Corpus Christi, TX. 78412
Tel: 361-885-2000



What is counseling?

Counseling is a shared effort between the counselor and client to improve the client’s mental health and quality of life. Counseling offers a safe therapeutic relationship and creates an environment that provides support for the client.

Who goes to counseling?

All sorts of people go to counseling for many different reasons. Counseling is appropriate for almost anyone age 3 and up. Counseling is not a punishment and going to counseling does not necessarily mean anything is wrong with you or your life. Sometimes we just need to make a change to make things a bit brighter.

What are the potential benefits of counseling?

  • Learning more about and how to cope with mental health concerns such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, anger, grief and other life stressors or changes.
  • Being able to identify goals
  • Developing potential solutions to problems causing distress
  • Improved communication with family, friends and others in client’s social network
  • Learning and practicing coping skills
  • Learning new social skills and relational skills with family and friends
  • Changing unwanted behaviors and developing positive ones

How can I support my child in counseling?

  • Consistently bring your child to counseling
  • Have patience with the therapy process
  • Encourage use of positive coping skills
  • Be active in the therapy process. Your counselor will suggest family sessions as needed and ask for updates about any changes outside of counseling.
  • Reinforce the idea that your child is not here because they are in trouble or that anything is wrong with them.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask your counselor if you have questions about the therapy process
  • Refrain from asking your child questions immediately after the sessions such as “What did you talk about today? Did you tell your counselor everything?” Sometimes they might need time to think about the therapy session or are not quite ready to share. Let them come to you.

Will the parent/guardian be told everything that is discussed or done in the counseling session?

A parent does have the right to know what goes on in session. However, therapy outcomes tend to be best if the child’s privacy, space and communication are respected. If the child expresses intent to harm themselves or others, the parent/guardian will be informed. Due to Texas’ mandated reporting law, a counselor is legally obligated to  report suspected abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities.

How soon can I possibly expect to see changes?

Every client is unique and sets their own pace in counseling. Changes may be seen soon or gradually over time. Counseling is not a quick, one time experience. It is journey that is best experienced when it is tailored to the client. If you have concerns, please speak to the counselor.

How often are counseling sessions scheduled?

Sessions are usually scheduled once a week or every two weeks. The frequency depends entirely on the needs of the client and family. It might be more. It might be less.

How long are counseling sessions?

Sessions typically last 30—60 minutes. This may vary session to session and depends on the client.

How long will my child be in counseling?

This is unique to every individual and will be addressed with you by your counselor. Some clients complete therapy in a few weeks and some in a few years. Your counselor will develop a treatment plan after the first couple of sessions and go over recommendations. The treatment plan will be updated as needed and will be communicated with you.

Who will be in the counseling room during session?

The counselor will always be in the room during session. The initial session will normally include parent/guardian with the child for at least half of the session. However, this is not mandatory. If you are seeking counseling for the child individually, sessions will include the counselor and child (client). There will occasionally be parent  consultation sessions as well. If you are here for family counseling, parent/guardian and child will all be in the room during session. Siblings are not normally involved in session but can be if the counselor feels it is appropriate.

What are the differences between a counselor, a psychologist and a psychiatrist?

All can provide therapy, treat and diagnose mental illness. The differences lie in levels of education, licensing and primary focus area during treatment. A licensed professional counselor has a graduate degree in counseling. A counselor will focus on the areas of potential benefit listed previously in this document. A licensed psychologist has a graduate degree in psychology. Psychologists are well versed in research and psychological testing. A psychiatrist is either a medical doctor (MD) or doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO). They have received extensive training in the practice of psychiatry and their niche lies in prescribing and managing psychotropic medications. Most of these medications can also be managed by your primary care provider/pediatrician if that is an area of medicine they are also comfortable with.