What to expect in therapy
The first session is used to gather details about the situation you need help with. You may be asked questions about your past, and some of these questions may be deeply personal. This is for the psychotherapist to get a fuller understanding of your circumstances, including what past events may be impacting your current issues.
Second and subsequent sessions
The information gathered in our first session will be used to complete an assessment, which will be reviewed with you in our second session. The assessment will include ideas about how we can use appropriate treatment approaches to resolve the problems for which you are seeking therapy. We will develop a treatment plan together, which will outline your goals and the strategies to achieve them. The second session will also be where we start to look at your problems in greater detail - including how they impact your life from day to day - and explore treatment strategies to address them.
Sessions are typically booked weekly, and the number of sessions required depends on your goals and the progress made in therapy towards those goals.
Process of therapy
Psychotherapy is a relational process between a psychotherapist and client. The exchanges that takes place in this interaction is what typically shapes a person's experience of therapy. Because many of the issues delved into can be quite sensitive in nature, there are times when, during your sessions, you may feel uncomfortable or distressed. This is a normal occurrence as the process of change is often difficult, and can make us feel vulnerable. Should you experience this in your session, feel free to let me know so that we can identify how you can be best supported. Although some sessions may be more difficult than others, this doesn't mean that you aren't making progress! One of the main benefits of therapy is that you will start to experience positive outcomes if you are fully engaged with the process.
All information regarding your treatment (including all verbal and/or written exchanges) will be kept confidential, except under the following circumstances:
If you indicate that you may be a danger to yourself or others;
In the case of apparent or suspected abuse or neglect of a child under 18;
If you report sexual abuse on the part of a regulated professional;
If you records are subpoenaed by a court of law;
If the records of your psychotherapist are reviewed by the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW).
If your case is being discussed by way of a consultation with peers or more experienced professionals to ensure that you receive a high standard of care.
Remember, your participation is completely voluntary and you can withdraw from treatment at any time. Typically, therapy ends when both you and your therapist agree that the goals of therapy have been met, or if your needs have changed to the extent that they are beyond your therapist’s scope of practice. Therapy can also end if you voluntarily wish to do so, even before your goals have been met. If you choose to withdraw from therapy, another appropriate alternative or referral will be provided at your request.