Starting therapy or analysis

Dr Lara Lagutina, South East London (Rotherhithe)

 

How long is one session and what is it like?


    The first consultation is usually 60 minutes long. This time allows us to talk about the difficulties you want to address and the context for these difficulties. It also gives me an opportunity to start getting to know you as a person and to learn about your life as well as your strengths and resources. What is equally important is for you to have a chance to meet me and ask any questions you may have. At the end of the session we will think and discuss together possible ways forward with the issues you want to address.


    Subsequent sessions are usually 50 minutes long. I see people at a frequency of 1 to 5 times per week. The frequency is discussed and agreed upon mutually.

How much do you charge?


    My fee for 2018/2019 is £75 per session. The fees are reviewed on annual basis. I may have some concessions available, please feel free to enquire.

 

What happens if I am early or late for my session or if I am ill or can’t attend for any other reason?

 

As I don’t have a waiting room, I would appreciate your coming on time. If you come early, I may not be available or ready to answer the door, and if you come late, we will still have to finish on time and so will have a shorter session.

When we make a decision to start working together (following the initial assessment period, which sometimes can take longer than one session), we will choose specific times for regular meetings, which will be the same every week. In doing that we take on a mutual commitment, meaning that these times will be reserved exclusively for you, whether or not you attend them. I will normally give you my holiday dates as much as in advance as I can, so that you can take these times into account in your planning of times away. I usually take holidays around Christmas, Easter and in August.If for whatever reason I have to cancel a session, I will not charge you for it. However, if you cancel or cannot attend a session, I will charge you for missed sessions irrespective of the reason for missing them.

Having said that, if you cannot make a session on a particular day, and would like to come on another day, I will usually try to find an alternative time to replace that session within the same week. I would not however carry over missed sessions from one week to another.

 

How many sessions will I need?


    Although this is a natural and a very frequent question, there is no straightforward answer to it, as a lot will depend on your individual needs and the nature of your problems. Sometimes people come with a very specific question (e.g. they need to make a decision and want to get more clarity in their thinking about a particular issue). In such cases a few consultations can be enough.


    Having said that, this is rarely the case and generally speaking, achieving a meeningful lasting change takes time. It is not uncommon for people to discover that, even when the initial symptoms may have lessened or have been resolved, they want to go deeper or do more work. This is particularly the case when the issues you want to address have been around for a long time and the roots go back to your childhood, perhaps to early traumatic experiences, and a meaningful change needs to happen at the level of early structures and underlying patterns in your relationships and in terms of your sense of self. In such cases we are talking about long-term therapy or analysis.


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