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How to End Therapy: Tips from a Therapist in Westchester, NY

Updated: Sep 24, 2023

therapy, ending therapy

There are many reasons why therapy comes to an end. Some of them can be perceived as “positive”, and some of them can be seen as “negative”. Here are some of the common reasons I’ve seen therapy come to an end.

· You met your therapeutic goals!

· Financial reasons

· You, or your therapist relocated

· Influence of others

· Difficulty scheduling

· Shift in the relationship with therapist

· Reasons unknown

Either way, we always aim to have what is called, “a termination session”. I personally prefer to call it a “closure session”- I think the terminology of “termination” sets a strong tone.

The therapeutic relationship is unique from all other relationships. Despite the differences-all relationships deserve closure.

Therapy is a place of vulnerability. You have done some intense self-reflection with your therapists guidance and support. Your journey through therapy has been unique and deserves a moment of reflection.

Ending therapy may be in or out of your control. Either way, my guess is that you have feelings about the relationship ending.

You may feel proud, or happy.

You may feel sad, or scared.

You may even feel angry, or resentful.

All of those feelings are valid and your allowed to have them.

Just as you have feelings about ending therapy, so does your Therapist. In my experience, some of these include:

· “I am so proud of the growth he/she has made over these past sessions!”

· “I hope he/she finds a therapist who they feel more connected to.”

· “His/her ability to communicate their feelings and needs has improved so much! They’re really learning to align their values and behaviors.”

· “I’m angry that accessibility to mental health treatment can be so difficult!”

The opportunity for a closure session allows you and your therapist to make space for these feelings, as well as discuss your plans after therapy.

Your journey deserves reflection and appreciation.

What new insights did you learn about yourself?

Your new skills deserve to be recognized

What was the most helpful lesson or skill that you learned?

Your resilience deserves to be celebrated.

How will you cope with future distress should it arise?

Your therapist appreciates your trust, openness, and honesty.

Regardless the number of sessions we shared, we have learned from you, we are proud of you, and will always hold a space in our hearts for you! Thank you!


About the Author:

Annabella Lipson, LPMHC

One of the team at Peaceful Living Mental Health Counseling, she enjoys working with teens & adults who are dealing with stress, anxiety, college transitions, and other behavioral challenges.

She is EMDR trained and incorporates Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Mindfulness practices with her clients.

She is available to take new clients. Schedule a 15 minute consultation today.


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