Sometimes strength means asking for help. Military OneSource and the Military and Family Life Counseling Program offer free, confidential, face-to-face non-medical counseling to support you with military and family life challenges like preparing for and handling a move or nurturing a relationship with a deployed spouse.
In-person, free counseling sessions are available to active-duty, National Guard and reserve members of any activation status, their immediate family members and survivors. All counselors have a master’s or doctoral degree in a mental health field and a license to practice independently.
Here’s what you need to know to begin your free, face-to-face counseling sessions.
How does face-to-face non-medical counseling work?
- You can schedule face-to-face non-medical counseling by calling a consultant at Military OneSource (800-342-9647). OCONUS/International? View calling options.
- If the consultant determines the service is right for you, you will be authorized for up to 12 counseling sessions.
- The consultant can put you in touch with a counselor that best suits your needs.
- Once you get authorization for a face-to-face session, you have 30 days to schedule it.
- If you’re not able to start your sessions within those 30 days, you can call Military OneSource to start over.
- To speak with a military and family life counselor (Military and Family Life Counseling Program) contact your installation’s Military and Family Support Center.
Are face-to-face sessions confidential?
- Information disclosed during a non-medical counseling session is confidential. It will not impact your career or your spouse’s career in any way.
- The only exceptions to confidentiality are legal and military requirements to report child abuse, spouse abuse, elder abuse, threats of harm to self or others, and any present or future illegal activity.
- Eligible family members or a legal guardian of a service member’s dependents can use non-medical counseling sessions without the service member’s knowledge.
Are children and youth eligible for face-to-face counseling?
- Military OneSource offers face-to-face non-medical counseling for children and youth ages 6 to 17.
- The service includes help with issues such as family relationships, school issues, adjustment to deployment or separation, and grief and loss.
- A parent must attend each session for military children ages 6 to 12, but only the first session for youths ages 13 to 17.
- Children younger than age 18 are eligible for counseling with a child and youth behavioral military and family life counselor with parental consent.
- All military and family life counseling with children occurs within line of sight of another adult.
What kinds of issues are addressed in face-to-face, confidential non-medical counseling?
- Improving relationships at home and work
- Stress management
- Adjustment and deployment concerns
- Marital problems
- Grief or loss
What kinds of issues are not addressed in face-to-face confidential, non-medical counseling?
- Active suicidal or homicidal thoughts: Call the Military Crisis Line at 800-273-8255, and press 1, chat online, or send a text message to 838255.
- Sexual assault: Call the Safe Helpline at 877-995-5247, or start an online chat. In case of immediate danger, call 911.
- Child abuse: Call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 800-4-A-CHILD (800-422-4453).
- Domestic violence: Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE (7233).
- Alcohol and substance abuse: Counseling services are available through your installation and are free to service members and their families. You may also refer to the Army Substance Abuse Program, Marine Corps Substance Abuse Program, Navy Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention, and Air Force Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment (ADAPT) Program.
- Mental health conditions: Reach out to your military treatment facility, or contact TRICARE.
What if I need support for an issue that falls outside of non-medical counseling?
- Military OneSource consultants can help you determine whether or not your issue falls under non-medical counseling.
- If it doesn’t, they will help you find other resources, including community services, installation services or TRICARE, if appropriate.
- You are strong and resilient. Now you need support. Learn how to better manage the stressors of military and family life by accessing confidential, face-to-face non-medical counseling sessions. Call 800-342-9647 or visit Military OneSource. OCONUS/International? View calling options.