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The How-To Lounge: Finding a Therapist

As you already know, I’m a huge supporter of therapy and often suggest it as a means of working through a specific issue — some problems are best solved with professional, and specifically, unbiased help. But finding someone who can meet your specific needs and whom you can trust is not an easy task. I’ve compiled a list of things to consider when seeking a therapist. To check them out


  • Since you really are looking for someone you can both confide in and count on to provide real help, it’s important to do a little research before choosing someone. The first step is making sure that whoever you consider is certified with the proper credentials — don't be afraid to ask them.
  • You also want to consider the specific issues you’re looking to address. While one therapist might be known for dealing with victims of abuse, he/she might not be as successful working with patients who have anxiety disorders. It's incredibly important that they can meet your needs so inquire about their particular strengths before going in.
  • Similarly, if you’re looking at treating a specific mental illness you may want to widen your search to include psychiatrists who have the ability to prescribe medication if needed.
  • Since some people might be wary about sharing a therapist, try turning to the Internet instead of relying on a referral. One quick search will give you access to a myriad of resources like Psychology Today’s Therapy Directory.
  • Before you make any appointments, make sure to get the details on what your insurance provider does and does cover. If you can only use an in-network therapist, ask for a list of names in your area.

Don't be afraid to try out a few people before settling on one; it seems like a lot of work, but it really will be worth it in the long run.


Join The Conversation
tglynn tglynn 8 years
my brother's therapist wanted to see me for a session- he's like 7 feet tall, and I'm 5'1. Tall people intimidate me- no I said no thanks :P
Kimpossible Kimpossible 8 years
many corporations offer therapy to it's employees as well through a network of therapists and it's confidential, it is also a good reference to use if you have it available to you. Also, don't be afraid to talk to your family doctor/general practitioner and ask him/her for a name of someone they know and respect. I know it's hard to ask for help when it's something so personal and usually something we want to keep private, but I think just looking into therapy if you feel you need it is a huge step and one should be proud of herself for doing even just that.
TidalWave TidalWave 8 years
If you're a student, most universities offer free on-campus counseling. I would definitely recommend this because once you're no longer a student... these things are ridiculously, insanely expensive. //hence why i don't have one :)
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