Understanding Confidential Non-medical Counseling for Service Members and Their Families


Service member speaking with a counselor.

Confidential, non-medical counseling is available free of charge to service members and military family members through Military OneSource and the Military and Family Life Counseling Program. Counselors understand that effective counseling has to be built on trust, and the client must feel safe discussing sensitive issues. Have confidence in the counseling process, knowing that non-medical counseling providers protect their clients' privacy per federal, state and military regulations.

Non-medical counseling is:

  • An effective and well-established strategy for finding answers to common emotional and interpersonal difficulties (such as adjustment after a deployment, marital conflicts, stress management, parenting challenges, and coping with a loss)
  • An important first step for many people to prevent problems from developing into more serious issues

Non-medical counseling confidentiality

Know

when it's time to ask for help.

You can receive non-medical counseling without anyone's knowledge, including:

  • Chain of command
  • Your spouse or partner
  • Your parents if you're age 18

You'll be asked to sign a release form if you want your counselor to provide information to a third party.

Limits of confidentiality

Stay

mentally fit by taking advantage of the Military and Family Life Counseling program available to service members and their families.

You can expect that all aspects of the counseling process, including scheduling your appointment and what you say during a counseling session, will be kept private except under certain limits. Federal, state and military regulations allow your counselor to release information without your signed authorization if there’s cause to believe that:

  • You're a danger to yourself or another person
  • You were involved in domestic violence
  • A child was or may be abused or neglected
  • An elderly or disabled person was abused, neglected or financially exploited

Access to Military OneSource non-medical counseling is available:

Get face-to-face, confidential, non-medical counseling services with a licensed counselor through the Military and Family Life Counseling Program by contacting your Military and Family Support Center.


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