If you are new to psychotherapy, please read the following paragraphs to get an idea of what to expect.
Take the Mental Health Quiz to see if psychotherapy can help you.
Your first psychotherapy session is usually a time for me to gather information about you and your needs. Here, you can find some of the qualities of those I work with. I will ask you to fill out this form so that I can learn more about your current and past physical and emotional health.
The first session is also an opportunity for you to interview me to see if my approach is going to work for you. Make sure you understand:
Don’t hesitate to ask questions anytime during your appointment. If you don’t feel comfortable with the first psychotherapist you see, try someone else. Having a good fit with your therapist is critical for psychotherapy to be effective.
For most types of psychotherapy, I will encourage you to talk about your thoughts and feelings and what’s troubling you. Don’t worry if you find it hard to open up about your feelings. I can help you gain more confidence and comfort as time goes on.
Because psychotherapy sometimes involves intense emotional discussions, you may find yourself crying, upset or even having an angry outburst during a session. Some people may feel physically exhausted after a session. I am there to help you cope with such feelings and emotions.
I may ask you to do “homework” — activities or practices that build on what you learn during your regular therapy sessions. Over time, discussing your concerns can help improve your mood, change the way you think and feel about yourself, and improve your ability to cope with problems.
Except in very specific circumstances, sessions are confidential. However, I may break confidentiality if there is an immediate threat to safety or when required by state or federal law to report concerns to authorities. These situations include:
The number of psychotherapy sessions you need — and how frequently you need to see me — depends on such factors as: