I went to my first therapy appointment last week, and I’m really upset about it. I think I found a great therapist, and I was really looking forward to meeting her and getting started, but right before therapy, I got so anxious. I started shaking when we for into her office, which she noticed and started asking me about it, which made me even more uncomfortable. Then, we started talking about my past (I’ve been depressed since adolescence, went to therapy then, even spent some time in the hospital), and she tried to go through all of my history, but I was still so anxious, that I could barely talk to her, and she didn’t even try to calm me down. At times I started to cry, but I don’t know if she was going too fast or just asking hard questions, but probably both. She wants to talk about stuff like aggression in family, sexuality and so on in next session, but I don’t think I can handle it so fast. I’m not yet comfortable with her, and now I’m even more uncomfortable. I’m practically scared of seeing that therapist again, even though I still believe she’s the best one I could find. Should I email her, explain what happened and ask her if we can go slower? Also, I could use some kind of milder approach, because she seems very strict, cold and distant. Would it be okay to ask nicely for that too? I’m not sure I can work or even talk to her if this keeps happening. *Thank you very much.*
You think that you have found a “great therapist” but your experience with her has been quite the opposite. She may not be the right therapist for you.
Alternatively, you should make her aware of your concerns. Do it via email if that is a more comfortable form of communication. The first meeting may not have been great but first impressions aren’t always accurate. You might try another session to see how it goes. If the second session isn’t good, then try another therapist. It can take time to find a good therapist, but it’s worth the time and effort to find one. I always recommend calling four or five and meeting the one you like the best in person.
One final point, you endured your first therapy session despite it being uncomfortable. It was difficult, but you did it anyway. It seems that you are on the right path. Good luck and please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle