Becoming a Therapist

I have my first session with a client at the Counseling Center on campus today.

It’s not like this is my first appointment ever. I’ve seen client’s individually and I’ve led groups at my internship site countless times, but still, today’s appointment is freaking me out. I’m really nervous.

The clients at my internship at severely mentally ill. They live on site at the residence. They do not work or travel independently. They suffer from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder with psychotic symptoms. Our sessions focus on setting goals and learning symptom management techniques. It’s not the typical therapy like you see on television or in the movies where you explore questions like, “How does that make you feel?”

The client I am meeting this afternoon is much more high functioning. They are in graduate school and their major complaint is mild depression.

I feel more like I am meeting a friend and we are going to talk about what’s stressing them out.

It seems much more real to me.

I talked to my friend last night who is a teacher. She was so excited for me and said, “It’s like you are student teaching! Next thing you know you’ll be working and seeing clients on your own!”

It’s true. I graduate in 3 months. In three months I could have a job and see clients regularly.

I really hope I can help this person. I really don’t want to screw this up. If you’ve got a few minutes around 5pm I would really appreciate any good thoughts or prayers.

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56 responses to “Becoming a Therapist

  1. You can do it! Just try to relax. But the fact that you’re so nervous shows how much you care which is a great thing. It sounds like you have plenty of experience. Otherwise they wouldn’t allow you to counsel. Don’t worry. Well, don’t worry too much. πŸ˜‰

  2. You can do it! Just try to relax. But the fact that you’re so nervous shows how much you care which is a great thing. It sounds like you have plenty of experience. Otherwise they wouldn’t allow you to counsel. Don’t worry. Well, don’t worry too much. πŸ˜‰

  3. Good luck Ashley! You will do great. Mental note made to send good thoughts you way around 5. Let me know how it goes. =)

  4. Good luck Ashley! You will do great. Mental note made to send good thoughts you way around 5. Let me know how it goes. =)

  5. The Paraplegic Chef

    What a rewarding job you are going to have. I can understand the nervousness, but I have this really strong feeling that you are going to be just fine. You know I’ll make time at 5pm.

  6. The Paraplegic Chef

    What a rewarding job you are going to have. I can understand the nervousness, but I have this really strong feeling that you are going to be just fine. You know I’ll make time at 5pm.

  7. You will be fabulous! I’ll send some good thoughts your way later in the evening πŸ™‚

  8. You will be fabulous! I’ll send some good thoughts your way later in the evening πŸ™‚

  9. ohhhh good luck! I remember my first counseling appt. It was scary! But after the first few mins, you’ll realize you got it under control! πŸ™‚

  10. ohhhh good luck! I remember my first counseling appt. It was scary! But after the first few mins, you’ll realize you got it under control! πŸ™‚

  11. you are going to be great! take a deep breath and i’ll be sending you buckets of good thoughts!!!

  12. you are going to be great! take a deep breath and i’ll be sending you buckets of good thoughts!!!

  13. lots and lots of good and happy thoughts coming your way! believe in yourself, it’ll be fine πŸ™‚

  14. lots and lots of good and happy thoughts coming your way! believe in yourself, it’ll be fine πŸ™‚

  15. erin - heart in ireland

    Good luck! You can do it πŸ™‚

  16. erin - heart in ireland

    Good luck! You can do it πŸ™‚

  17. You’ll be great.
    You want to help them which in my opinion, knowing little about therapy, is the first step to succeeding!

    Thoughts and prayers headed your way at 4pm my time, 5pm your time.

    GOOD LUCK!

  18. You’ll be great.
    You want to help them which in my opinion, knowing little about therapy, is the first step to succeeding!

    Thoughts and prayers headed your way at 4pm my time, 5pm your time.

    GOOD LUCK!

  19. best of luck, you’re going to do great!

  20. best of luck, you’re going to do great!

  21. I’ll be sure to send lots of positive thoughts you way at 5pm. I don’t blame you for being nervous (I was always nervous during my first days of teaching and therapy too), but I think you’ll find great satisfaction in helping others and seeing the fruits of all your hard work in grad school. Good luck! xoxox

  22. I’ll be sure to send lots of positive thoughts you way at 5pm. I don’t blame you for being nervous (I was always nervous during my first days of teaching and therapy too), but I think you’ll find great satisfaction in helping others and seeing the fruits of all your hard work in grad school. Good luck! xoxox

  23. You’re seriously a superhero. πŸ™‚

  24. You’re seriously a superhero. πŸ™‚

  25. ohhh so exciting! I used to think I wanted to be a therapist. I am not so sure anymore…hence putting off graduate school.

    I bet you will be great!

  26. ohhh so exciting! I used to think I wanted to be a therapist. I am not so sure anymore…hence putting off graduate school.

    I bet you will be great!

  27. sarahbelledotcom

    good luck sweetpea.
    you will do FABULOUS, seriously.
    the confidence i have in you is through the roof. remember that, and make sure you have lots in yourself.
    and lastly, have fun. enjoy yourself.
    ox

  28. sarahbelledotcom

    good luck sweetpea.
    you will do FABULOUS, seriously.
    the confidence i have in you is through the roof. remember that, and make sure you have lots in yourself.
    and lastly, have fun. enjoy yourself.
    ox

  29. I will be thinking of you! And good luck!

  30. I will be thinking of you! And good luck!

  31. I’ll totz be thinking of you!! Good luck!

  32. I’ll totz be thinking of you!! Good luck!

  33. Oh, that’s so exciting. Praying it all goes well!

  34. Oh, that’s so exciting. Praying it all goes well!

  35. I’m sure you’ll do great!! Good luck!

  36. I’m sure you’ll do great!! Good luck!

  37. From one future therapist to another: come to your session prepared as possible, allow for some silence if need be, know the case, and don’t beat yourself up. Good luck.

  38. this sounds really exciting, embarking on a new part of your particular learning process. good luck!

  39. From one future therapist to another: come to your session prepared as possible, allow for some silence if need be, know the case, and don’t beat yourself up. Good luck.

  40. this sounds really exciting, embarking on a new part of your particular learning process. good luck!

  41. P.S. I graduate in 3 months too.

  42. P.S. I graduate in 3 months too.

  43. I’m thinking good thoughts for you. I hope it goes well!

  44. I’m thinking good thoughts for you. I hope it goes well!

  45. I used to be a counselor at a state run hospital where people that suffered from many disorders live and have lived for very long. I learned a lot working there including that they would do better in smaller run facilties. I hate the term “high functioning” although that was the only way I could decribe some of their situations. It was scary at first, but once I learned who was threatening and who wasn’t, something you shouldn’t have to deal with, I began to learn as they did. It’s sad because all of them really can live their lives like the rest of us with proper training and therapy, but it takes the kind of commitment and patience that only a few of us can give. I wish you luck and I know you will be fine. It’s really less scary than it seems.

  46. I used to be a counselor at a state run hospital where people that suffered from many disorders live and have lived for very long. I learned a lot working there including that they would do better in smaller run facilties. I hate the term “high functioning” although that was the only way I could decribe some of their situations. It was scary at first, but once I learned who was threatening and who wasn’t, something you shouldn’t have to deal with, I began to learn as they did. It’s sad because all of them really can live their lives like the rest of us with proper training and therapy, but it takes the kind of commitment and patience that only a few of us can give. I wish you luck and I know you will be fine. It’s really less scary than it seems.

  47. Ah!! Congratulations! = )

    I’m sending good vibes, and I’m sure you’ll do great!

  48. Ah!! Congratulations! = )

    I’m sending good vibes, and I’m sure you’ll do great!

  49. ahh good luck. crossing my fingers for you that all goes well (but i’m sure it did.)

  50. ahh good luck. crossing my fingers for you that all goes well (but i’m sure it did.)

  51. nicoleantoinette

    You seem like such a compassionate and calm person. I’m sure you’re a wonderful therapist.

  52. nicoleantoinette

    You seem like such a compassionate and calm person. I’m sure you’re a wonderful therapist.

  53. Congratulations on this big step in your future and your career! You’re going to be amazing πŸ™‚

  54. Congratulations on this big step in your future and your career! You’re going to be amazing πŸ™‚

  55. Congratulations! I don’t know how people handle working with other people like that…I’d be a mess!! you are so much tougher than I am :)!!

  56. Congratulations! I don’t know how people handle working with other people like that…I’d be a mess!! you are so much tougher than I am :)!!

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