A Message on COVID-19 From Our Founder

The health and safety of our clients and therapists is our priority and utmost concern.  

As we continue to see a spread of COVID-19 throughout the United States, and in our local communities, we are closely monitoring the recommendations of the CDC and our local and state health departments and are following all guidelines provided by these organizations.

Currently, we have no plans of closing our offices or canceling sessions. The local County Health Department is encouraging citizens to continue with daily life while taking precautions such as increased handwashing and staying home if you aren’t feeling well.

Social distancing has been encouraged to minimize the spread of the virus, however, because we are a small group, we do not have large events or crowds and we see our clients one-on-one, closing the practice does not seem warranted at this time.  If the CDC or WHO provides different guidance at any time then we will make changes as needed.  

Some precautions that are part of our normal operations to reduce the spread of any virus, and that we will continue to take include: daily cleaning of our therapy rooms and waiting rooms, availability of hand sanitizer throughout the practice, and encouraging clients to do telehealth from home if they are sick.  

Some additional measures we are putting in place include:

Cleaning frequently

While we’ve always cleaned throughout the day, we’ve now introduced increased awareness and commitment to actively cleaning throughout the day. In addition, we have a routine schedule for deep cleaning, wiping down surfaces and disinfecting common areas.

We use CDC-approved products for cleaning that have been recommended by the CDC as being effective against COVID-19.

Limiting Community Contact

Though we love our clients, therapists are now required to wash hands between sessions and refrain from common physical contact with clients (handshakes, hugs etc.)

We also are encouraging clients to come right at their appointment time if they would like to minimize contact with others in the waiting room.

Making Telehealth Services Available

We would also like to offer telehealth services to any client that feels uncomfortable meeting in the office or is deemed high-risk or someone in their family is at high risk of contracting the Coronavirus.  

Please talk with your therapist about scheduling your sessions using telehealth until you feel comfortable coming back into the office for sessions.

Please remember that if you or anyone in your family has any symptoms of illness (fever, cough, vomiting) to stay home and do telehealth appointments (if you’re able to do so) until everyone has been symptom-free for 24 hours.  

We understand that this virus is concerning and may cause increased anxiety for a lot of people.

We are here to help and want to ensure our clients that we will continue to meet with them in the best way possible while making sure that they receive the appropriate level of care.

We are closely monitoring the situation and adjusting to any new developments. We will communicate any changes through our website, email and social media channels.

Jamie Criswell, LMFT  
Founder, CEO

5 Date Night Ideas From A Raleigh, NC Therapist

Couple sitting at a Raleigh, NC bar table for date night for relationships, couples therapy and marriage counseling in Raleigh, NC and Fuquay Varina, NC

Too busy for date night?

It might be time to rethink your priorities! Couples who commit to spending time together build greater levels of intimacy and trust, better communication, and higher marital satisfaction in general.

The good news is you don’t have to go on an expensive trip to even leave Raleigh. Here are 5 creative date-night ideas that will help you reconnect.

Videri Chocolate Factory

Did you know there’s a Chocolate Factory in Raleigh that’s free to visit? Make a day date to take a self-guided tour through the factory during their chocolate-making hours (M-F from 10am -3pm). Sit down for some conversation at the chocolate counter and enjoy a hot or frozen hot chocolate from the coffee bar.

Sarah P Duke Gardens

Book a trolley tour and ride along the winding paths of the beautiful gardens. Take in all of nature’s beauty in a romantic setting where you can let the stress melt away while you can reconnect and learn more about the rich history of a local treasure. Don’t forget to take a selfie to hang on your fridge to remember the day!

Lafayette Village

If you’re looking for romance For a more romantic setting, stroll down Lafayette Village and take in all this village-style shopping mall has to offer. Have a leisurely lunch and hit up some of the great local shops.

The Rialto

You can’t go wrong with the classic date night of dinner and a movie! The Rialto is the perfect place to check out indie movies in a vintage-style theater. Kick back with some popcorn and enjoy the theater.

FRESH. Local Icecream

Who doesn’t love icecream? FRESH ice cream is the perfect treat any time of day. They produce ice cream right here in their store for you to enjoy. Even if you can’t carve out time for a long dinner date, try carving out 15 minutes to enjoy a cone together.

Whatever you decide for your next date, approach your couples time as an opportunity to connect no matter how briefly.

Thank You, Vets!

On behalf of the entire Foundations Family Therapy Team, we thank all of our Veterans for their service.

Date Night: Excuses, Excuses

We’ve all heard it, “Its important to have a date night”, regardless of if you are newly dating, in a long term relationship, or married, it is always important for you and your significant other to spend quality time together. And by “quality time” we are not talking about sitting beside one another as you each surf the web, social media feeds or play a game on your selective electronic devices.  So, we know date nights are important (they enhance communication, connection and an overall sense of satisfaction in a relationship), but why are they so difficult?

Here are the common excuses people use for why they “can’t” have a date night:

  • It’s too expensive
  • There isn’t enough time / We’re too busy
  • We’re too tired
  • We don’t need date night

These are just a few, I’m sure we could all easily come up with more, but you get the idea. However, I am here to tell you that these are not good enough excuses for skipping date night.


  • You can easily find a cheap alternative
  • You can always make time for your significant other
  • You both will feel better after spending precious time together
  • Every couple needs to value the importance of date night

It’s simple really. All you need is a smartphone and a Pinterest account. Once you create an account and sign in, search for keywords like date night, cheap dates, easy date ideas, etc. You will find so many awesome date night ideas, and they are all right at your fingertips.

If you want to do something that leads to more of a surprise date, try creating a Date Jar. For the Date Jar, you’ll need popsicle sticks, a sharpie, and a jar. On each popsicle stick, write a date idea. It can involve traveling, staying local, being at home, being expensive, being cheap or free, or whatever else you would like to add. With that in mind, I suggest getting popsicle sticks that have multiple colors. This is so you can color code your dates.

For example:

  • Red – Very Romantic Date
  • Orange – Cheap or Free Date
  • Yellow – Date Night at Home
  • Green – Expensive Date
  • Blue – Date That Requires Traveling
  • Purple – Relaxing and Laidback Date

Now that you have color coded them, you can then select that topic color from the jar without seeing which exact date it is. This is especially a great idea for couples who want to have a little adventure and go on a “surprise” date or for couples who can never decide on what to do.


Side note: This makes for a cute, sentimental gift idea for your loved one. You can personalize the jar by decorating it or painting it then give it to them as a gift.

Now, go and start pinning favorable dates on Pinterest and/or create that Date Jar for your next date! Happy Dating!

If you and your significant other are struggling with feeling connected, couples therapy may be a great place to recharge and reconnect, contact us to find out more.

Out-of-Pocket vs. Using Medical Insurance to Pay

Additional considerations regarding out-of pocket payments vs. using medical insurance to pay for your sessions with us in our Fuquay-Varina office.

Out-of-pocket payment

Using Medical Insurance

You determine if therapy services are necessary.

Insurance company decides if therapy services are “medically” necessary.
You determine how many sessions are needed and how often you meet.

Insurance company decides how many sessions they will pay for and caps the number of sessions.

Diagnosis of a mental disorder is not required in order to receive services. In many circumstances, (for example, relationship difficulties, family developmental transitions, major life decisions, family crisis) a diagnosis of a mental disorder is not appropriate or necessary.

Typically, insurance companies require a diagnosis of a mental disorder before they will pay for services (In other words, they won’t pay unless you’re diagnosed). The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (referred to as the DSM), published by the American Psychiatric Association, lists and provides criteria for diagnosis.

Greater confidentiality. The information you share with your therapist stays between you and your therapist.

Decreased confidentiality due to the large number of persons handling medical insurance claims. Potential company (mis)control of information when claims are processed. Insurance companies have access to your therapy/counseling records.

Therapy services are tailored to meet your unique needs.

Insurance companies may require that services follow standardized models.

You (along with your therapist) are in the driver’s seat in regards to the services you receive. Your goals and needs are the top priority.

You are only one out of millions of people for whom the insurance company makes healthcare decisions. The top priority is managing health care costs and delivery (this is why it is called “managed” care).

**used with permission and adapted from considerations on insurance by Dr. Jeff Krepps***