I saw all the terrific reviews of Alison and decided on her after a lot of research online to find just the right person. I had never seen a therapist before and was a bit worried about two things, 1) how fragile I’ve felt emotionally since the events of the last year and what it would be like to dig up those feelings in therapy sessions, and 2) how i would be able to afford therapy sessions, since my particular insurance would only cover a portion of the cost.
On the phone Alison reassured me that she could help with part 1, and to take care of part 2, she said she offered a sliding scale based on the individual’s financial situation. I went in for an introductory session and paid full price. The session itself was lovely, but of course very preliminary; we didn’t get very in-depth with anything. At the end of it, she asked me what I could afford to pay; I quoted her a figure and she said she would get back to me, adding “I like you, I would really like to work with you.”
After a day or two she emailed to let me know that unfortunately I wouldn’t be able to afford her unless I could pay more than what I quoted. I went back to my insurance company and learned a couple things about my HSA-eligible plan, then discovered I could afford Alison by taking out an HSA debit card and paying for the sessions with it until my deductible was met. I came to Alison, excited with the news and eager to work with her. She told me “I’d prefer that you would or could prepay for at least 5 sessions in a row at that rate to secure you as a client.” I wrote back to her email to let her know I could bring in the HSA card and swipe it at the first session to cover the 5 sessions, and that I just wanted to make sure that after the first 5, I was free to leave therapy when both of us felt it was the right time. I thought that seemed reasonable given that she told me in our introductory session that she focused on a coaching model of therapy and didn’t believe in people coming to see their therapist indefinitely. But I got this short email came back:
“To be honest, I’m feeling like I’m not the best match for you. I’m sorry. Please look at other therapists as they are just as good. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more of help.
Funny, part of what I was coming to her about was a fear of rejection from the opposite sex, and issues I’ve had with rejection.
That is my experience with Alison. Take it or leave it. I do not know, to this day, why she suddenly disappeared – she gave no indication she would do so until her last email, and she gave no reason why. I would think if she was really the amazing therapist everyone claims her to be, she could do a bit better than this.
I sent the email thread between her and I to a couple of friends who have had success with their own therapists in the past, to make sure I didn’t somehow step out of line with Alison. Unanimously, they felt she had been inappropriate and insensitive. I try very carefully not to “play the victim,” but it seems fair to at least let everyone know what happened with her; and that’s why I’m posting this review.