Question: What does the first session look like?
Answer: The initial session will be an initial assessment to discuss the client’s history and needs for treatment. During this first session the client will have the opportunity to see how therapy will work, review office policies, privacy and confidentiality, as well as determine whether or not they are comfortable with the therapist.
It’s vital to have a positive working relationship with your therapist, so it’s recommended that the client and therapist will meet 2-3 times before deciding whether or not the relationship will continue. The therapist will provide client with referrals of specialists or trusted colleagues if they feel someone else might better be able to work with the client.
Question: How do therapists work with other professionals?
Answer: In order to preserve the continuity of care, it’s important to work with school counselors, pediatricians, primary care physicians, psychiatrists, etc. With written permission, therapists can provide treatment plans or answer questions that other professionals may have. If a client needs their therapist to work with other professionals in their life, please don’t hesitate to ask.
Myth: I have a great support system of friends and family. Someone who does not know me, cannot help me.
Answer: Having our family and friends around provides some of the best mediators of stress and venting, however, these individuals can be biased in our favor and less able to offer different perspectives and solutions. While your therapist may not know you personally, this will work out for your benefit. Your therapist is unbiased or impartial when assisting you. All therapists hold the assumption that you know what’s best for yourself, and they are just assisting you along the way.
Myth:Only crazy people or those with serious psychiatric disorders seek out counseling / therapy.
Answer: While it’s true that therapy can help those with psychiatric disorders, seeking out a therapist does not mean you are “ill” or “crazy,” it implies that you are taking control of your own life and improving the quality of life for yourself. Counseling/therapy can benefit a wide range of situations in some one’s life such as helping with self-esteem or assertion issues, time management, adjusting to new surroundings or going through a big life changing event such as marriage or divorce.
Myth: I am very independent, I don’t want to go to counseling because the therapist will just tell me what to do and how to do it.
Answer: Your therapist is there to assist you in exploring your feelings. Once you have decided what you want to get out of therapy, your therapist will help you work towards that goal.
Myth: I am a strong person, I don’t need therapy, I can figure it out on my own. Attending therapy is a sign of weakness.
Answer: An individual who seeks out counseling is actually the complete opposite of weakness. They are showing courage, and instead of pushing their bad feelings aside they are stepping up and taking charge of their life by resolving their difficulties.