How to Connect with a Therapist for the First Time

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you want to reach out to a therapist, but you’re not sure how to start the conversation? Don’t worry, we’re here to help you effectively connect with a therapist! While the idea of reaching out to a therapist may make you feel anxious, remember that you don’t need to dive into all the details right away. Simply let them know that you’re looking for a therapist and briefly discuss some basic information.

How to Initiate Contact with a Therapist

Salutation

Addressing a therapist appropriately can be a bit stressful, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. In general, using “Hi, [First Name]” or “Hi, Dr. [Last Name]” (if they’re a doctor) is perfectly acceptable, especially if you’re uncertain about the therapist’s pronouns.

Where to Start…

Alright, you’ve gotten past the greeting. Now, how do you begin? It’s simple – tell them why you’re reaching out. Just say, “I am interested in starting therapy.” Keep it straightforward and to the point, like the theme of this entire article!

Check Availability

Therapists often mention on their websites whether they are accepting new clients or not, but it’s always a good idea to confirm. You should also inquire about their session availability to ensure your schedules align.

Briefly Describe Your Concerns

While there will be time to discuss specifics later, it’s sufficient to mention one or two sentences in your initial email about what you’d like to address in therapy. Here are some examples:

  • “I struggle with anxiety, which is impacting my daily life.”
  • “I’ve experienced a traumatic event and need assistance processing it.”
  • “My partner and I are going through a divorce, and we believe our child could benefit from talking to someone about it.”
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Request a Phone Consultation

A phone conversation allows the therapist to gather a better understanding of your concerns and discuss logistical details such as cost and scheduling. It’s important to note that a phone consultation is not a therapy session but rather an introductory conversation that typically lasts 10 to 15 minutes. This is also an opportunity for you to ask any questions you may have for the therapist.

Evaluating Compatibility

While phone consultations are a great way to learn about a therapist’s approach and philosophy, it’s important to check if the therapist provides consultations or if you prefer other methods of communication. If you have concerns about talking on the phone, don’t hesitate to ask during your initial outreach! Consider asking questions like:

  • “What can I expect during a typical session with you?”
  • “How should I prepare for my initial therapy session?”
  • “As a parent, what is my role during my child’s therapy sessions?”

Inquiring About Cost

You can address cost-related questions either in your initial email or during the phone consultation. Here are some questions you may want to ask:

  • “Do you accept XYZ insurance?”
  • “If I pay out-of-pocket, how much is a single session?”
  • “Do you offer a sliding scale rate?”

Closing

Finally, ask about the next steps and provide your contact information. And voila, you’re done!

Email vs. Phone Call

The tips provided above can be applied whether you choose to call or email a therapist. If you opt for a call, there’s a good chance you may need to leave a voicemail or speak to a receptionist. In either case, the basic structure of the communication remains the same: state why you’re reaching out, confirm availability, briefly describe your concerns, inquire about a phone consultation, and ask for follow-up to discuss the next steps (don’t forget to leave your phone number!). You may want to hold off on questions about therapy style until you can directly communicate with the therapist.

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Template:

Hi [Therapist],

I am interested in starting therapy. I wanted to inquire about your availability for new clients and potential session times. I am seeking therapy because [briefly detail what you would like to address]. Could we schedule a phone consultation to discuss this further?

Also, I have a few questions regarding logistics, therapy style, and costs. I would appreciate it if you could provide more information.

Please let me know the next steps. Thank you!

[Your Name]

How RightFit Can Assist You

RightFit simplifies the process of connecting with therapists. You can select the therapists you’re interested in and compose one email that will be individually, privately, and securely sent to them all at once. We even provide questions that you can include in your email in case you’re unsure what to ask. Our aim is to make the process quick and seamless, alleviating anxiety while finding the right therapist for you to embark on your mental health journey.

Match With Mental Health Professionals Now

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