22nd Jun 21 | Go Back
Whether you have had therapy before or whether it’s a new experience for you, it can be natural to feel a little apprehensive about what to expect. You may be feeling worried about what the counsellor may ask you; feel scared that you may get upset or overwhelmed or talking about what happened to you. Knowing what to expect in therapy can help put you at ease, which is why we’ve tried to do that here.
Your therapist is someone who has been specially trained to help support others with their emotions and help them facilitative change. They have experience in and participate in ongoing training around helping people who have experienced issues around sexual abuse. They are an empathic individual who has a great capacity to care for others. They are something who wants to listen, understand, and support you at your own pace. They know how to tailor their approach to match the pace you would like to go. They are also open to hearing how you’d like to work, and your thoughts on what they can do to help support you as best they can. They will use questions to help you explore your thoughts and gently challenge the way you might see things, to help create new vision.
The process of therapy is unique to every individual. This is because every individual experience’s their distress differently, and because therapy can have many different faces. This is why your therapist can adapt their approach to suit your needs. At one end of the spectrum the process of therapy may be very much about expressing and making sense of the emotions you are feeling. At the other end it can be about learning new information about how emotions – and the mind and body – work so that you can develop strategies to help support yourself. Useful therapy can be judged on its ability to facilitate change for the person experiencing it. Its aim is to help a person make sense of things in their mind by unlocking emotions and shifting their perspectives. A bit like the videogame Tetris. You must twist and turn the pieces to get them to slot together. As you do this, chunks of blocks disappear, and a different understanding is formed.
DRASACS offer an initial appointment with a therapist to help decide if therapy is the best form of support for you right now. Followed by up to 20 sessions of therapy: each lasting up to 50 minutes. Sessions may include short wellbeing questionnaires to help to give your therapist some detail about how you’re doing each time they meet with you. It is common for therapists to review how the work is going with you in blocks of 6 sessions.
You may have heard the phrase a ‘Talking Therapy’. This is a useful description as one of the key ingredients to therapy is that you feel ready to talk. If talking feels difficult – but you are ready for change – your therapist will be able to help. Talk about what you want to talk about. If you do not want to talk about the details of what happened during sexual abuse, you don’t have to. If you want to talk about it; that is also ok. It’s important to feel comfortable with your therapist as useful therapy relies on a trusting relationship between you. Be open to trying new ways of looking at things and explore how they look and feel to you. Try to be brave and share when you don’t understand something or can’t make sense of it. Let your therapist know if something doesn’t work for you. Be patient and kind with yourself. Feeling stuck can feel frustrating, therefore so can the process of trying to change it.