First of all, congratulations! If you’re clicking on this, you’re on the healthy path that leads to therapy and treatment or if you’re not there yet, at least you’re curious enough to read up in advance. And since we’re here, it’s important to mention that therapy is a HUGE step that most people take some time to get to.
When people do get there, though, it’s very important that they end up choosing a therapist that works for them because not all therapists work for all people. Sometimes personalities clash, sometimes the treatment methods do.
So what can you do about this? Well, you can learn how to choose your therapist and here’s how!
Consider what will your basics be for a therapist you can trust
So, there are always a few things you should be aware of before you start hunting for therapists. These things usually revolve around your level of comfort — for example, would you be more comfortable with a female or a male therapist? Would you rather talk to someone who’s much older or relatively within your age range?
Cash DOES matter
Your health, mental or physical, is literally priceless but here’s the thing. When you go to a therapist, you’re going because you want to get better and that’s why it’s better that this therapist be within your budget range because if you keep worrying about breaking the bank every session, the stress will get to you and, well, stress is a hindrance to mental health.
If you have any trusted friends or family members who have been to therapy or know people who have been to therapy, don’t shy from asking them to recommend a good therapist. If you can’t find anything there, you can consult people’s reviews on the internet.
Don’t feel strange about asking the therapist all the questions you need answered…even if they seem silly
Remember when we said choosing your therapist is all about your comfort levels? Yeah, well, this means you’ll have to ask A LOT of questions. Actually, use the first session to ask all the questions you want and don’t shy from doing so because you’re doing this for you and your therapist will understand this.
So, ask everything you want — ask them how long they’ve been working, ask them about their license, ask them if they’re experienced with certain traumas or abuse. Go wild with inquiries.
Talking to them is easy
Yeah, kind of the point, right? You should be able to just feel at ease (post initial, normal awkwardness) with your therapist. Need it simpler? The vibe has to be right because, well, sometimes that’s just what you need.
They don’t dominate the conversation more than you do
You’re going to therapy, so YOU can talk, so this is a bit of a given, right? Well, not always. Sometimes a therapist (and that’s a red-flag therapist) shares more than you do about way too personal stories and details (and, yes, boundaries are important here). And, to explain more, this isn’t about when a therapist is sharing a method or an idea so you could understand your experience more.