321 – The Art of Termination

Creating the “Good Enough” Ending
Christine Courtois

All therapy must eventually end, but endings can come about for any number of reasons: from the positive (successful treatment of a specific issue) to the negative (treatment stalling or insurance running out) to outside factors (relocation, retirement, illness, death). Whatever the case, endings can evoke many issues, especially about separations and losses. Developing a plan for termination can mitigate a client’s sense of abandonment and allow all parties to leave with a feeling of closure. In this workshop, you’ll:

  • Discuss termination scenarios, pinpointing how to avoid various pitfalls, especially ones that leave the client feeling abandoned
  • Identify specific elements to include in a termination plan, such as notification, personalized preparation, wishes, and referrals
  • Explore what it means to write a professional will in the event that termination is sudden and outside of the therapist’s control


Christine Courtois, PhD, ABPP, is a psychologist who’s just retired from her private practice of 35 years. She’s a coeditor of Spiritually-Oriented Psychotherapy for Trauma and other books on the treatment of complex trauma. She’s chaired the APA Clinical Treatment Guideline Panel for the treatment of PTSD.

Scroll to Top