Post # 1
Hey bees! We uncovered a little something this weekend that needs professional help but I have no idea how to go about finding a therapist let alone one that is a good match. I’m sure there are some in the area but we’re not exactly in a big city. How would you go about finding one? (It would be primarily for my husband’s father and how-to-avoid-being-like-him issues but I’m sure I would come in for the occassional joint session if that makes a difference.)
Post # 3
- Wedding: May 2011 - Bartram's Garden
You can try to find online reviews, but there aren’t many, as most people don’t like to write reviews about stuff this private.
Unfortunately, the best way to find a good therapist is by trying some out. You can find profiles of local therapists online, so you can come up with a list of what type of person you’d be comfortable with (gender, age, etc.) Then, you might just have to try them out.
It took me three therapists before I found one that I liked.
Post # 4
Thanks dana! I should have guessed it would likely be good ol’ Google coming to the rescue, as usual. I found a couple options now I guess he just has to start checking them out. I’m really surprised that so far there’s only one male that appears to be practicing independently. Hopefully that doesn’t prove to be a big road block.
Post # 5
i would check with your health insurance company. Most can provide you with a list of providers in the area that they will cover. They usually sort the list out by category – OB, orthopedics, dermatologists, mental health, etc….
Post # 6
That’s a good point. Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t currently have health insurance (but hopefully that will change soon) but it probably wouldn’t be bad if things were covered in case I ever go there. Who knows, maybe they would pick up the tab on any joint sessions?
Post # 7
I would probably figure out specifically what kind of therapy you were looking for before you google or search for it. There are a lot of different types of therapists out there, and each have their own degrees and backgrounds. Decide if you’re looking for individual therapy, couples therapy, family therapy, etc. If it’s individual, also decide what type of person you are and what you’re looking for. For example, if you’re the “explore my childhood by sitting on the couch” type, ask for therapists trained in psychodynamic or psychoanalytic therapy. If you’re looking for conflict resolution, ask for someone trained in interpersonal therapy. If you’re more a logical and practical type, ask for cognitive behavioral therapy. That should narrow your list down significantly. If you’re thinking of both individual and possibly couples therapy, make sure that your therapist is versed in both. Lastly, you do have to try some sessions before you get a feel for whether or not things will work. Do NOT continue with a therapis that either you or your husband don’t get along with. Therapy will not work if you don’t feel comfortable with someone, especially since you’re digging into painful or conflictual issues.
As for the payment issue, many therapists will work through “private pay” or out-of-pocket, and many are willing to do a “sliding scale” based on your ability to pay. Call around town and ask all those questions, and hopefully you’ll find one that works.
I hope that’s helpful!
Post # 8
honestly the best way to find a reputable therapist is by referral. ask your family doctor. if there is a university in the area, most have a counseling center – you can call them and they can give you a referral (or even a university in a larger city nearby – kids usually go home in summer, so they might have good referral networks for other parts of the state). ask your minister or anyone who you may know of who has been to therapy in your town. you can use psychology today website or the AMerican Psyc Assoc or state Psyc Association websites. even if you aren’t going to use insurance, you can still use the insurance website to get a list of names and numbers (if you are not the primary patient and only go as an occasional thing, you most likely will not be able to susbmit to your insurance). not all insurance cover mental health or cover it well anyway – but that’s a other issue….
like another poster said, you really have to call and talk to them and see if they are a good fit for you/FI whoever is going to go to therapy. you might have to go to a few intakes before you find someone you like and mesh well with. i know i am a good therapist, but this doesn’t make me the RIGHT therapist for everyone. it is truly all about the match. so make some calls – most will give you a quick phone consultation for free. some will even give you a free in-person consultation (but this is more rare). even when you talk to someone, if they are not the person you want (maybe you want a male and the person you call is a female or you want a marriage/family therapist and they treat only children etc) they can also give you referrals. there is a lot of networking that goes on and most referrals come from other professionals. you just kind of need to get plugged into the system somewhere. good luck. feel free to PM if there is anything i can so or you have more questions.
Post # 9
Wonderful! Thank you so much! I think part of my concern is not knowing what the different degrees are. There are a couple in town with MSW or LCSW after their names and I have no idea what those mean. Are there any to avoid or does that just depend on what you’re looking for? Or they should be a member of ____ Association? I’ll definitely check out the association websites you mentioned, Andy. Hopefully those will give me some good leads.
“For example, if you’re the “explore my childhood by sitting on the couch” type, ask for therapists trained in psychodynamic or psychoanalytic therapy. If you’re looking for conflict resolution, ask for someone trained in interpersonal therapy. If you’re more a logical and practical type, ask for cognitive behavioral therapy.”
That makes a lot of sense and should definitely help narrow the field.
I think he’ll start calling around tomorrow, assuming he can get the day off. Hopefully we find one without too much trouble. Then again, I’m a little afraid he’ll find one he really likes and then get this job that’s 6 hours away in a small town and we’ll be moving in a month. If that happens the nearest therapists would be 100 miles away over a mountain pass. At least it would be my hometown though and I think we could find someone good there easily enough. It would just be the going to see them part that would be tricky… When it rains it pours, I guess!
Thanks bees! And if any one else has something to add please feel free to chime in. Maybe it will help someone else down the road.
Post # 10
honestly all the research will tell you that orientation of the therapist accounts for only a tiny percentage of success. much more important that you like the person, you jive with what they’re saying etc. perhaps if you are completely and totally against talking about anything before age 18, you might have more difficulty with someon strictly dynamic, but in essence its all the same. even cognitive-behavioral will reach back into childhood (even if they don’t admit it).
there are lots of different degrees. most important though is that you want someone who is LICENSED in whatever field they are in – you want them to be trained and ethical and being licensed usually ensures this. since i have a PsyD, you can guess where my bias is. its so much about experience – two people with the same degree might have vastly different ways of working as a therapist. you just never know until you meet with them. my best therapy experience was with a MSW.
Post # 11
MSW is master’s of social work, and LCSW is licensed clinical social worker. These typically require about two years of graduate training, whereas if you go with someone with a Psy.D. or Ph.D. after their name, that means they have their doctorates in Clinical or Counseling Psychology, with five or more years of graduate training and more hours of supervised counseling experience. For those with doctorates, being a member of APA (American Psychological Association) is a plus.
Of course, more years of schooling and supervision does not necessarily mean better. As others have said, you’ll have to just see if it’s a good match by having your Fiance go to a session. If they aren’t clicking by the first or second session, odds are its a bad match and it’s time to move on to someone else. Good luck!