9.06.2013

How to Choose A Therapist




  1. Counselors should do no further harm to a client/clients.
  2. Counselors should respect a client's culture, religion, world view, and sexual orientation.
  3. Counselors should not direct the course of treatment. In other words, the client's goals are utmost...not the clinician's.
  4. Counseling is NOT AS SEEN ON TV. Aggressive confrontation, challenging communication, and demoralizing comments, are all examples of unprofessionalism.
  5. Licensed and professional counselors receive fair funds for their services; they are not ethically permitted to accept "trades" or barter for their services.
  6. New coping skills should be developing fairly quickly. A good Psychotherapist will provide outsides resources, such as books, movies, workshops, lectures, presentations, and communication exercises. 
  7. Expect a top-tier level of professionalism that you would expect at a physician's office or any other reputable and educated professional. 
  8. A counselor's religious or political views should not be part of the therapy environment. All religious and cultural considerations must be respected and incorporated as part of the therapy treatment process for a healthy outcome.
  9. Paperwork should be involved. At your initial session, be prepared to sign a HIPPA form, along with consent forms and intake paperwork. All Licensed Therapist's are required by law and ethics to procure your signature and understanding prior to therapy.
  10. Therapist's will require payment at the time of your appointment.

The Maybe's 


Some therapists will text clients/some will not. 
Most therapist's book their own appointments, some have secretary's.
Some therapist's offer a sliding scale.
Some therapist's work weekends.
Some therapist's accept debit or credit card/square/check/cash.
Some therapist's allow for a 10 minute "meet and greet" - or a complimentary session, but most do not. Feel free to ask.

If you know that your work schedule rarely allows for day time appointments, be very clear with your therapist prior to scheduling an appointment that you are needing evening or weekend appointments (these are hard to find).  However, let me also add that a counseling appointment is a medical appointment and should receive equal consideration from your employer's position. At the very least, make it a priority for yourself - this is important.

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist's (LMFT's) are Licensed Psychotherapist's

(The titles are interchangeable). 
LMFT's are also referred to as Counselors, however, "Counselors" are not necessarily LMFT's.