Ongoing therapy is an open ended approach in which we agree a weekly day and time to meet, with no pre-determined end date. The ending in ongoing therapy comes about when the time feels right. This will usually be when we both have a sense of completion around the work we have been doing. Ongoing therapy will usually be for longer than six months, and often run to a number of years.
In ongoing therapy, there is a great deal of scope for going where the process takes us. You may or may not have a specific focus for the therapy. A more general focus would be self-exploration. A more specific focus would be problems with intimacy, or resolving the impact of a chaotic childhood on your present day activities. The idea being that, for ongoing therapy, the issues involved tend to have deep roots and/or involve covering a large amount of ground. Simply making sense of what happened during a prolonged period of chaos in your life could take a lot of time.
Because of the longer timeframe involved, ongoing therapy is an ideal format for exploring relational issues and recurring life themes. Some patterns of behaviour or feeling have a long orbit. They’re the things about you that people will only notice if they know you very well for a long period of time; long enough to see the patterns playing themselves out. It can also take a long time to build enough trust with someone to approach some of our deeper, more protected issues in the first place.
Finally, ongoing therapy means that there is a regular point in space and time where you get support for just being who you are. In an increasingly busy culture, that kind of space is becoming more scarce, as is the freedom to just be and experience, without the pressure of achieving something someone else judges as useful or productive.