Below is a very practical guide on how to find the therapist that is right for you and has the right credentials. Feel free to save this for when it’s time to go looking for a therapist for you or a friend.
Logistics and credentials
- A licensed mental health professional
- Typically designated LPC, APC, LMFT, or Ph.D for licensed psychologist
- Seeing an intern in a Master’s level Clinical Mental health program can provide affordable services, and each intern is supervised by a growing expert in the field trained to help the intern help you!
- If desiring a specific theoretical approach or intervention
- Typically designated on the therapist “about me” page
- Feel free to ask about credentials or training in a certain approach!
- Can they provide distance counseling?
- Cannot drive to their office?
- Live too far away?
- No one in your area specializes in what you are looking for?
- Chronic illness or other medical concerns prohibit you leaving your home or place of care
- Traveling or scheduling conflicts?
- No problem! Distance counseling through HIPAA compliant telehealth platforms are available!
What to look for
- Working with a therapist who is open to feedback, what works, what does not
- Culturally and religiously sensitive
- Holds space and empowers instead of giving advice
- Honors your boundaries by maintaining a professional working relationship
- Helps you become okay with not being okay
- Explains confidentiality, basic rights, what to expect
- Collaborates with you about treatment, goals, and specific needs
Written by: Catherine Virden