The first visit lasts for approximately 50 minutes. Issues of confidentiality are discussed and the client is then invited to outline why they are seeking counselling.
This session is an opportunity for the client to form a judgement about whether they think and feel that they will be able to work with the counsellor. This visit will also allow the counsellor to form a judgement about whether they have the appropriate skills and training to assist the client with their particular problems.
If at the end of the first session client and counsellor agree that some further counselling would be helpful then they discuss the practical questions such as how many sessions of counselling would be useful and how frequently the session should take place. Typically a counsellor would suggest meeting for about six sessions followed by a review at which they would both assess whether the counselling was proving to be helpful and whether there was need for further sessions to be added.