During your first visit, a licensed therapist will provide you with our Policies & Procedures Packet, complete a comprehensive intake assessment, and answer any questions or concerns you may have.
A Comprehensive Intake Assessment is the first session and consists of exploring your history, areas of concern, relationships, treatment preferences, and treatment goals. The 90 minute appointment will yield an initial preliminary diagnosis, a clinical recommendation for frequency of sessions, and a recommended therapeutic approach.
A comprehensive intake assessment consists of exploring many areas of function and dysfunction through direct questions by a licensed therapist. Some people value the structure of the questions while others may find it uncomfortable to share so much information during the first meeting. I utilize this time to allows us to create a unique and individualized treatment plan so that our work together is effective, saving you both time and money. I will work hard to ensure that the experience is as easy and comfortable as possible.
It is important that you share with your therapist any discomfort and any desire to take a break.
It is necessary that a guardians attend the intake. Not only are there legal and medical documentation that need to be completed, but it is valuable to hear directly from the adults. In some instances, this can be difficult for children or adolescents. I recommend that guardians/parents limit critical judgement or inappropriate topics during this time. However, if there is pertinent information that needs to be communicated to the therapist, please either contact me via phone or schedule a separate parent-only session.
To best support children and adolescents in embarking on a therapeutic journey, I often rely on humor, a non-judgmental stance, and clarification of my role, expectations for therapy, and what to expect.
A Safety Assessment can be utilized in conjunction at any time, though is important to complete during the first session if there is any safety concerns.
A safety assessment* determines whether or not traditional outpatient treatment is appropriate or if more intensive treatment is required. If it is determined that once weekly outpatient treatment is not clinically appropriate, a recommendation (e.g, Intensive Outpatient, In-Patient, etc.) and referral will be completed on your behalf.
*CFS is not available 24/7. If you or your child has a mental health emergency, go to your local emergency room or contact 211/Mobile Crisis for assistance.
Common safety concerns are:
Risk of harm to self
Risk of harm to others
Refusal to follow clinical recommendations
Any suspected child abuse or neglect
As a mandated reporter, I am legally and ethically bound to communicate any suspected child abuse or neglect directly with the Department of Children & Families (DCF).
If you are unsure about the validity of a concern, talk with your therapist. You can also contact DCF voluntarily at any time.
DCF provides voluntary services to families who actively seek out support prior to or without a report being made. To learn more, click here.
Research has found that upwards of 40% of successful mental health treatment is due to the therapeutic relationship. It is vital that you feel heard, respected, and cared for. Sometimes there is a personality difference that can interfere with feeling comfortable. I often suggest allowing a minimum of three sessions to determine if it is a good fit for you.