This short blog will share information on when to stop therapy. You may have been in therapy for a while now, and are wondering when it’s okay to stop going. Although you have a good connection with your therapist and find it very helpful, you feel confident in ending counseling.
Stopping therapy can cause mixed emotions. There may be a sense of pride and satisfaction, knowing you’ve come far in your therapeutic process. Alongside this, you may feel worried or sad about not being able to talk to your therapist anymore, and fully coping on your own.
However, a collective goal for therapists is for you to be fully independent and successful in managing stressors. They are your biggest cheerleaders, and want to see you thrive and feel in control! It can feel like an awkward conversation to have, but is a great way to check-in with your therapist.
You may not want to stop therapy altogether, but discuss the frequency of sessions you have. Maybe you want to go down to every other week, monthly, or call as needed. Your therapist will be more than happy to discuss that with you!
When to Stop Therapy: When it is clinically appropriate
Depending on your presenting issues and how you are currently functioning, your therapist may talk about the clinical appropriateness of stopping. Of course, this is a recommendation for your well-being, and you can still end services at any time. Also, you can always reach back out to pick up where you left off.
One example may be coming in for managing anxiety. You may present with having worrisome thoughts or having panic attacks. At the beginning of services, you were struggling more often and felt out of control. Now, you don’t experience such distressing symptoms anymore.
Perhaps you come to therapy struggling with suicidal ideation and self-harm. Although you have made a lot of progress, you still experience thoughts of suicide again, or relapsing to self-harm. At this point, it may not be clinically appropriate for you to stop therapy services.
Your therapist will provide psychoeducation and create space for active collaboration regarding your treatment plan. Trauma therapy in Simi Valley, CA works from a trauma-informed lens. Make sure to read our blog on 3 Signs That Therapy is Working!
When to Stop Therapy: When the goals you set have been met
In the first few sessions of therapy, you and your therapist may have set goals to work towards together. The goals may be collective for a variety of symptoms, or specific goals targeting something in particular. Also, these goals are unique to you and what you hope to accomplish out of therapy.
One common goal in therapy is learning how to cope with uncomfortable or distressing emotional states. This includes depression, anxiety, grief, trauma, and much more. You may have come into therapy services not knowing how to cope with your feelings. It could be that you turned to unhealthy ways to cope, such as through substances or self-harm.
Through a variety of different activities, exercises, homework assignments, and more, your therapist will help guide you to meeting that goal. Alongside that, you and your therapist will engage in talk therapy, or other modalities of therapy.
A goal you have could be learning to better communicate your feelings or needs to others. You may practice that in session, understand why it’s important to you to be able to do this, and more. The work occurs inside and outside of the session, and you may be ready to fully do it on your own now.
When to Stop Therapy: When you feel confident in your coping skills
At the beginning of starting therapy services, you may have felt out of control or unsatisfied with your ability to cope with stressors. It could be that a sudden traumatic event occurred, and you were not sure how to even begin to deal with it. Therefore, you turned to a therapist for help.
During your therapeutic journey, you got a lot done. You identified your triggers, got to know yourself better, met your inner child, understood connections between behaviors or reactions, and much more. Also, you learned a lot of ways to cope with stressors that work for you.
Your therapist may ask questions like, “What do you think you needed at that moment?” or “In what ways can you support yourself with that?”. By asking you these questions, you are actively engaging in self-reflection. You are also teaching yourself how to advocate for yourself at the moment!
Therefore, you may feel really good about coping and supporting yourself through difficult moments. You know what calms you down, makes you feel good, or helps you accept your current situations.
Talk to your therapist about where you are at in your therapeutic journey. Healing does not occur overnight, and it’s common to feel that the progress is inconsistent. However, keep in mind that your therapist wants to see you thrive, and will be there if you decide to return to therapy.
In-person therapy in Simi Valley is ideal for those seeking a separate, safe space from their home. Check out our blog on Online Therapy or In Office Therapy to understand what format is best for you. Another great blog to read is ours on if you need Therapy or Medication to address your issues.
By seeking out support, you can begin your journey to feeling relief. You don’t have to go through finding the right level of support alone, either.
Consider calling our therapy group at (805) 774-1506 for a free consultation on how you or a loved one can get started today!
Seek out a validating, safe environment with us today. We will help you get to where you want to be. Our therapists provide trauma therapy, teen therapy, individual adult therapy, LGBTQIA+ therapy, anxiety therapy, depression therapy, family therapy, and more in-office in Simi Valley, CA.