Mar 25 2007

Choosing a therapist

Published by at 1:19 pm under Counseling & Psychotherapy

How do you find a therapist?

The most common way is to ask friends if they know a therapist who has been helpful to them or someone they know. Then you have someone you trust pointing you in the right direction.

If this does not work, you can look on the internet and check larger sites, like Psychology Today where you can find many therapists by just putting in your zipcode or the problem you are trying to solve.

Many therapists have their own websites or blogsites (like this one), so you can learn a lot about someone just by visiting their own personal site.

When you finally get around to calling a therapist, you are going to want to match up your concerns with the area of expertise of the therapist. Therapists have many different models of doing therapy and personal styles.

One question I have been asked frequently is whether I talk with my clients or sit more in silence and make brief comments. For some reason, these clients did not like that style and are looking for someone who will communicate directly with them.

Some other typical questions are:

  1. Do you have any special training or area of specialization?
  2. Where did you get your training?
  3. Can you tell me about your practice? Do you do anything besides counseling and psychotherapy, like teaching or workshops?
  4. How successful would you say you are with someone who has the types of concerns I have?
  5. What are your fees? Do you accept insurance?
  6. Where is your office and is there parking or is it near public transportation?

Before making a final choice, it is helpful to meet therapists for one session or a part of a session to see how you feel. I will offer to meet prospective clients for a brief time or for a full session, so they can meet me and get a better feel for the way I work. Therapists often advertise a free initial session so you can get to know them.

Choosing a therapist is an important step, so take your time and do whatever it takes to make a good decision.

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