Wednesday, June 22, 2022

What Your Family Can Expect From Your Initial Intake Session

Participating in family therapy can create feelings of fear, anxiety, and/or even anger that the negative experiences of family life have taken a dramatic turn for the worse. However, it is normal to feel certain emotions before attending the first session. First, you are about to meet someone you have never met before in your life. Second, you worry that bringing out into the open family problems will only make the problems escalate. Third, at least one highly reluctant family member appears to be eager to derail the attempt to find solutions to difficult family problems.

Knowing what to expect during your initial intake session can mitigate the negative emotions that often develop because of the great fear, anxiety, and yes, anger, of one of the greatest unknowns you will ever face in life.

Let’s complete a brief overview of what your family can expect from your initial intake session.

Meet Your Therapist for the First Time

In most cases, a family therapist wants to meet each member of the family during the initial intake session. This allows your therapist to start the process of connecting with each family member. Your therapist does not ask in-depth questions, but instead, tries to break down any barriers that block progress in developing a more trusted relationship.

Your therapist meets every family member in a relaxed setting that is not susceptible to interruptions.

Complete Paperwork

The confidentiality of family therapy requires the submission of different forms and documents. Part of the paperwork submitted at the time of the initial intake session includes a questionnaire that gives the family therapist an idea about how to proceed with conducting future sessions. Perhaps your therapist recommends one or more individual adult therapy sessions for certain members of your family to gain additional insight into the major hurdle that has damaged family relationships.

Although group therapy sessions represent the best opportunity to address family issues, meeting with one or more individual family members can help open up discussions that otherwise would remain dormant.

Understanding the Ground Rules

Like other types of therapy, family therapy sessions require the establishment of a structured game plan that encourages interactions with the family therapist, as well as between family members. An informed consent form describes the structure every family can expect during therapy sessions. You get to learn the duration of each family therapy session, as well as how many sessions you can expect to participate in before the end of the sessions.

The First Session

The first session unfolds depending on how your family therapist prefers to work. You might participate in a highly-structured initial intake session or the therapist might choose to go with a less structured format. The initial intake session, which should last no more than one hour, is all about establishing the groundwork for additional sessions. You can expect to answer questions concerning your lifestyle, personal history, and why you decided to participate in family therapy.

One of the most important questions to answer regards explaining what problems have developed that have produced a considerable strain on family relationships.

Author: verified_user