Alisha L. Wagner, Ph.D.
This section is intended to help you get a better sense of what to expect before and during the first session. Making the decision to seek therapy may be filled with uncertainty and can be stressful. People may wonder: "Do I really need or want therapy?" or "Will I find the right therapist for me?" or "Will a therapist really be able to help me?"
When you first call to make an appointment, I'll ask for some basic information about what’s bringing you to therapy and what you may hope to accomplish in therapy.
Once we schedule a first visit, I will ask you to come 15 minutes before our appointment to read and complete some paperwork. The paperwork consists of a Notice of Privacy Practices document, client information brochure, patient history form and consent to treatment. You may go to the FORMS tab, download the patient history form and fill it out before you come to the first appointment. If you have any questions about my office policies and procedures, I will answer them before we start our session.
The first two sessions provide an opportunity for you to talk about what’s bringing you to therapy, and it allows me to get specific information about your problems, concerns and goals for therapy. I will ask about several areas of your life, such as your interpersonal relationships, job/occupation, history of medical or psychological problems, means for handling stressful life events, and other areas. At the end of the second session, I'll give you some initial impressions and we'll discuss setting up the next appointment. I'll also ask if you have any questions for me. Some people may report feeling a little better after the first couple of sessions since they talked about their problems and concerns with a non-judgmental professional. I hope this gives you an idea about what to expect for a first session. I look forward to having the opportunity to work with you.
The good life is a process, not a state of being. It is a direction, not a destination.
- Carl Rogers -