What Happens in the First Session of Counselling and Psychotherapy?
Updated: Sep 25
If it is your first time visiting a counsellor or psychotherapist it can feel incredibly daunting, unlike other appointments it is difficult to know what to expect, what questions will be asked and how intrusive it could be are all reasons I have had as why someone won't attend.
The first session is really an assessment session which depending on who you are seeing will involve some practicalities and an intake form might be filled out, which can include:
Date of Birth
Next of kin
Medical History and Medication
Relevant Mental Health History
Space will also be provided for:
You to talk about why you've come to therapy
what you wish to get out of therapy
Concerns and worries about attending
Most therapists, if they haven't already explained the way they working on first contact will also:
Their background and qualifications
Which professional body they're registered with
Their confidentiality and GDPR policy which may include mentions of a clinical will
The type of therapy they provide
Their experience working with people who have similar problems
How long the therapy will last, and how many sessions they can offer
What to do if either of you need to miss or cancel a session
Their fees, if they charge fees
When attending therapy it is important you ask all the questions you need to, and you feel comfortable with your therapist.