The important stuff you should know right away is this:
- I charge $100 per session, which is 50 minutes of client/therapist face time
- I do not accept insurance, and I ask for a credit card on file
- I can do in person therapy, at my office in downtown Overland Park, KS
- I can do telehealth therapy, as long as the client is in Kansas during the appointment
- I see adults, and teens accompanied (at least initially, depending on age) by a guardian
- I am under supervision by a clinically licensed social worker
- These are the policies and consent documents you will have to accept before beginning work with me: Documentation
Here’s some more stuff you may want to know, and some of the above in more detail…
More about my rate, insurance, sliding scale fees, and credit cards
I charge $100 per session, which is 50 minutes of client/therapist time, scheduled in blocks of one hour to give me ten minutes to jot notes, eat a snack, and possibly pee.
I do not accept insurance at this time. There are a couple of reasons for that, some practical, some ethical.
I do offer a “sliding scale,” which is to say, I reserve a few slots for clients who have a demonstrated inability to pay the full fee. I cannot see all my clients at this rate. Please do ask about this if cost is—or becomes—a barrier to receiving help.
Finally, I ask for a debit or credit card on file, to charge automatically after each session. Neither of us need the additional stress of remembering about payment.
I am under supervision by a clinically licensed social worker
As a social worker licensed in Kansas I am able to do clinical work (that is, see clients, diagnose disorders, etc.) if I am under the supervision of a social worker who is clinically licensed in the state of Kansas. I must be under supervision for 3,000 hours—1,500 of which must be client-facing—before I can sit for my clinical licensing exam. I am to do this in no less than two years, and no more than six.
I am currently supervised by Annas Boyer, LSCSW, LCAC. If you work with me, you will sign a disclosure and consent form that will include her contact information so that you can complain about me. 😉
I see adults and teenagers (and who I don’t see)
I see individuals who are:
- Young Adults
(ages 13-17, under the auspices of their parent(s) or guardian(s))
- Parents of queer or questioning teens
(but not if I see their teen, it is unethical for me to have both as clients)
Who I don’t see:
- I do not see children (ages 1-12).
- I do not see seniors (ages 65+).
- I do not see couples.
I am not a good fit for those populations, but I can help these clients find a suitable therapist.
Do I only see queer clients?
While I do specialize in seeing queer persons, I am welcoming to anyone who is looking for help.
I see people who are not queer at all, but appreciate a strengths-based perspective of affirmation and inclusion.
I see people who are not queer but have someone important in their life who is, and are working through feelings or circumstances around that, as partners, friends, or family, and especially parents who want a safe space to process their reactions to the journey of one of their children.
And yes, I do see people who are questioning their gender and/or sexuality, people who know they are queer but want the perspective of a queer therapist, and especially transgender or gender non-conforming people who appreciate the shorthand of having a nonbinary and trans therapist who gets it.
And finally, I see teens who are working through all the hurdles of just being a teen, along with being queer or questioning. These clients must be accompanied, at least initially, by a parent or guardian.
What are my favored areas and modalities?
I specialize in identity issues, in grief, and in anxiety and depression. I am queer, and am good at viewing these issues through a queer lens. I’m old(er), and have a wealth of experiences to draw on to help us connect.
I take an eclectic approach to the therapeutic modalities I use, though I fall most comfortably into motivational interviewing (MI), cognitive behavioral theory (CBT), feedback informed therapy (FIT), and solution-focused brief therapy (SFBT). I’ve been known to appreciate the “and/both” forms inherent to dialectic behavior therapy (DBT), but I do not offer DBT therapy per se. I am learning about internal family systems therapy (IFS). I do not offer EMDR, sorry.
The most important part of working together will always be the therapeutic relationship between client and therapist. I strive to create a safe, honest, and ethical space for people to be vulnerable.
What to expect from me as a therapist, and what if you don’t like me?
I am kind, quiet, and very good with silences. I am affirming, encouraging, and believe every client has strengths they can bring to the process.
I believe in being up front and honest with clients. We both know we’re doing therapy. Neither of us may know exactly what’s going on, but I am committed to helping clients figure it out.
It is proven that the most important factor leading to success in therapy lies in the therapeutic relationship. That is, how much the client trusts the therapist, and thus how vulnerable the client is able to be.
If you do not feel comfortable, heard, or safe with your therapist, it is not your fault.
Sometimes therapists and clients don’t vibe! If that’s the case with me, I encourage clients to tell me. I won’t be hurt, this happens to therapists all the time. I will gladly help clients find another therapist. Everyone deserves the best help they can find.
What about confidentiality?
I tell people, “your therapist is the one person you shouldn’t lie to.” Confidentiality is vitally important to social workers. We will only disclose confidential information when you consent, or to prevent serious, foreseeable, and imminent harm to you or others. Even then, we disclose only what is necessary, and we try to inform you ahead of time that we will be doing so. (See section 1.07 of our Code of Ethics)
Do I write letters for gender-affirming care?
Yes, I write letters for gender-affirming care. This involves me meeting with a client for one (or more) sessions to explore their experiences of gender. I will provide a copy of the letter to the client, and can also send it directly to health care providers.
I do not charge for these letters.
For clients I see regularly there is no additional fee for the letter beyond our regular sessions.
For clients I do not see regularly, I will meet with them for an hour and then write a letter. I will spend that hour asking about their experiences of gender, in order to represent them honestly and ethically in the letter.
While a diagnosis of “Gender Dysphoria” is required by many insurance companies before they will cover gender-affirming care, requiring this is a bunch of bull***t. I explore gender experiences with clients to help them examine their gender identity, not to place barriers before them. I want to be clear, especially to gender nonconforming people, you are who you say you are, and that is allowed to change.
More about me
My name is Dani Novo, and my pronouns are ey/em/eir, though they/them will work if that’s a bridge too far. I am nonbinary and transgender. I was assigned male at birth, and transitioned late in life. I am in my 50’s, and look like the picture on the welcome page. I came to social work only recently. I have lived a lot of different places, and done a lot of different things. I grew up overseas and speak Spanish (but not well enough to conduct therapy in Spanish). Social work is my fourth fully different career. I bring all of this life experience to our work together, because how can I not? This is who I am.
How I use the word “queer”
When I was a kid, “queer” was an epithet bullies threw around to hurt people. Now, I use it freely to reclaim it as a blanket term for anyone who comes at the world differently as part of the LGBTQ+ expansive community.
I do understand that for some people, it may have hurtful connotations. If that is the case for you, please let me know, and I will respect that.
What does “hopepunk” mean?
To me, “hopepunk” embodies the way I approach the therapeutic relationship between myself and a client. On one hand, I hold clients gently, with the belief that everyone has strengths they can bring to bear on their troubles. On the other hand, I hold clients fiercely, coming alongside them to support those strengths. Radical hope is the most punk.
Hopepunk is actually a literary term best defined in opposition to “grimdark.” Here’s a definition from Wikipedia.
What is a social worker?
A social worker is someone with a degree in social work, either a BSW, an MSW (or, yes, a DSW or a PhD). We are trained in a lot of different areas, in order to do a lot of different jobs. We specialize a little bit during our schooling, but mostly we specialize by doing the work we’re driven to do. Some social workers work in schools as counselors or case workers. Some work at hospitals, some in community mental health agencies. Some work for organizations doing advocacy or community work. Some, like me, work in mental health (and some work in mental health in all those other places, too). I do what’s called clinical social work, which his to say, I work with mental health diagnoses, and tools and techniques proven to help people figure themselves out.
There are a lot of other professions that do the same thing, counselors (LPCs) and marriage and family therapists (MFTs) among them. I know many of those, and trust them to be able to help people with mental health issues.
One thing that is different, is the NASW Code of Ethics social workers are bound to follow. Counselors and MFTs have their own codes, I believe, but when I was looking at programs to help me become a therapist, the social work code really spoke to me. It emphasizes the self-determination of the client, the inherent value of every person, and the requirement that social workers work against oppression. These three aspects embody how I approach not just my work, but also my life.