Contact | Goals and Outcome | Assessment
Instruments | Termination
The first step
is to call us to answer any questions or to make
an appointment. Therapy sessions may focus on the immediate
crisis, resolution more in depth issues, or combining therapy
with various family members as needed.
initial appointment is often called an "initial evaluation." This
appointment is scheduled for you to discuss your concerns and problems
from your point of view. There may be time during this appointment
to obtain historical and other background data or this information
may be gathered at subsequent sessions. In times of crises, the usual
format of an "initial
evaluation" is not followed in the hope that the time might
be used to resolve or relieve the immediate crisis. At times your
therapist may ask you to complete at least one questionnaire
concerning your concerns and problems. Outcomes of the questionnaires
will be used to target specific goals and be discussed with you
as during ensuing treatment sessions.
We expect and encourage you to obtain knowledge
of the procedures, goals, and possible outcomes of counseling. We
expect to make our contact one where you receive the maximum benefit,
and we will also keep you informed about alternatives. Counseling
may be beneficial for some individuals while, at the same time, there
are some risks. The risks may include the experience of intense and
unwanted feelings, including sadness, anger, fear, guilt, or anxiety.
It is important to remember that these feelings may be natural and
normal and an important part of the therapy process. Other risks
of therapy might include: recalling unpleasant life events, facing
unpleasant thoughts and beliefs, increased awareness of feelings,
values, and experiences, alteration of an individual's ability or
desire to deal effectively and harmoniously with others in relationships.
In therapy, major life decisions are sometimes made, including: changes
within yourself regarding you own sense of who you are, awareness
of problems and changes in relationships, and decisions regarding
your life goals. These decisions are a legitimate outcome of the
therapy experience as a result of an individual's evaluation of their
life issues. Your therapist will be available to discuss
any of your assumptions, problems, or possible effects of our work
In addition to the "initial evaluation," it
is often beneficial to conduct a "formal" psychological assessment.
The decision to assess using psychological instruments will be discussed
with the client in advance, and the discussion will include the nature
of the tests to be utilized, the rationale for the testing and
if warranted, the results of the testing.
Termination of psychotherapy may occur any
time and may be initiated by either the client or the therapist.
We request that if a decision is being made to terminate, there be
a minimum of a seven-day notice in order that a final termination
session(s) may be scheduled to explore the reasons for the termination.
Termination itself can be a constructive, useful process. If any
referral is warranted, it will be made at that time.
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