More threads by lallieth


How does the patient come to the decision to end therapy..if they think they are well enough to end..and can a therapist give a time line as to how long they think a particular patient needs therapy?


Hi Lallieth,

I think there are several ways and reasons that therapy can end. It can end because the therapist isn't a good match for the client, or it can end because the client, therapist, or both feel they've gone as far as they can go together. Sometimes it can just take a break and resume a few months later...but usually the decision isn't made without discussion and mutual agreement. Often the therapist will have a "termination process" when a client is leaving as well.

When I left my last therapist it was after 18 months and I just didn't feel like we were getting anywhere or that it was the right match. With my current therapist, I've been tempted to take a few breaks but I've always discussed it with her so she knows where I'm at and what I'm thinking.

A therapist's job is ultimately to become obsolete, and a good therapist will be involved in the process to terminate or cut back, or provide a referral to someone who may be a better match.


My understanding, which stands to be corrected, is that at the beginning of therapy, a conversation with the therapist should determine what the goal(s) of therapy should be.

Once those goal(s) are achieved, therapy might end.


Just to add to what Steve said, although goals are usually set at the beginning of therapy, I believe that those goals can change and be added to during the course of therapy and therefore add length to the originally time planned for therapy.
very good question lallieth, i am glad you asked. the thing i've wondered about is what kinds of feelings one might have as a good indicator that it's the right time to finish. does anyone have any insight into this?
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