The Initial Session

Are you considering seeing a psychologist for the first time? Maybe you have some experience with therapy and know it is time to reach out for support. it takes courage to take that step. My job is to create a supportive, nonjudgmental environment for us to talk. Talking to a psychologist is different than talking to friends or family, who cannot always remain objective.

During our first session, I will ask you to complete some forms that include some information about why you are seeking therapy at this time. The forms also discuss confidentiality, patient rights and privacy of your records. Another form includes information about rates, insurance and cancellation policies. Our first meeting is a chance for me to get to know you. Most often, this involves a conversation about your current concerns and your history of difficulties, challenges, and relationships as well as personal strengths and triumphs. When I have a sense of your concerns, I can offer suggestions about ways therapy may proceed from there. I usually have a sense of a direction we can take by the end of the second session if not the first.

The direction we take in therapy is always your choice. I firmly believe in the collaborative nature of therapy and welcome feedback when our direction does not feel right to you.

Some general possiblities that often come out of an initial session include:
  • Recommendations for specific therapeutic approaches including EMDR therapy, development of new coping strategies or strength-based therapy
  • A specific plan of action for the next week or two weeks
  • Follow up appointments
  • Referrals

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Helpful Forms

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