Some people feel uncomfortable seeing a therapist.
You might, too.
Many people worry they’ll run into somebody they know.
They are nervous about what the therapist will ask them and they might be anxious about what they’ll have to talk about – and what the therapist will think about what they have to say.
If that’s the case, you’re not alone. So we want you to know what to expect the first time you visit.
A lot of people want to know:
- Who will I have to talk to?
You will probably meet Pam, Sharon or Tom at our welcome desk. They will have the paperwork for you to complete before you meet your therapist. We’ll ask you to come in a little early for the first visit. (If you want to get a head start you can also download our Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic Intake Questionnaire and complete it at home before your session.) The only other person you’ll probably talk with is your therapist. You will know his or her name before your appointment. (Learn more about our therapists before you get here.)
- What questions will the therapist ask?
She will probably ask about your family history, your education and work history and about any health issues you have. Some of the other questions you can expect include:
- What led you to make an appointment?
- How long have you been experiencing whatever brought you here?
- Have you ever experienced this before?
- What did you do then?
- How is this different?
- When was the last time things were better for you?
- How were they better?
- What would you like to be different?
- How do you hope therapy can help you?
- What will I have to tell you?
Only what you think is important for us to know. And only what you feel comfortable and safe sharing so you don’t go home and think, “Why did I say that?” and maybe not want to come back.
- How long will it take?
You should plan about an hour-and-a-half for your first session. After that, follow up sessions are about 50 minutes. At the end of your first session you and your therapist will decide how often you should meet. We like to see you every week for at least a few weeks so we’re able to build trust faster. (Building trust is a key component of your success! And we know it takes time.)
- What happens after the first appointment?
In the first couple of sessions your therapist will carefully review your diagnosis, which is simply a name we give to describe what you are dealing with. Together the two of you will create a Recovery Treatment Plan, a written list that identifies specific, measurable goals for you to work on with your therapist’s support.
- How much will it cost?
Our fees are the same for every payor (insurance). If we accept your insurance those fees might be different, and sometimes are paid in full. If we do not accept your insurance we will gladly contract with you at the same rate that we accept as payment from other insurances. (Here is more information on our fees.)
- What will the therapist think?
Chances are pretty good that your therapist will be much more concerned about what you think! And that he will support you in your decision to seek help.
- What if I see somebody I know?
Well, you might. But if you do, you’ll know why they’re here, too: to get help for a problem they’re not sure how to handle. Just like you.
At Behavioral Healthcare Corporation we are committed to utilizing all our skills to help you identify goals that are realistic – and meaningful – to you. We expect you to only commit to goals and activities that make sense to you. Remember – this is your therapy. Not the therapist’s.
Your journey toward mental health is all about you. We’re here to guide and support you along the way.