FINDING A THERAPIST
...A Serious Business
What To Look For
If you decide to go to a therapist, find someone with whom you feel comfortable. Not that therapy should always be comfortable -- it isn't. You need to be able to be quite open about what you feel and think. So there needs to be good rapport between yourself and your therapist.
Things to look for in a therapist include: warmth, being a good listener, not being judgmental, someone you feel you can trust, and someone who encourages you to make your own decisions. These qualities are probably far more important to the process of providing good therapy than what "school" of therapy a counselor adheres to -- or how many diplomas and other credentials the therapist has accumulated (although there can be some reassurance in those).
When people decide to seek help, they often ask friends or acquaintances who have experience with therapists. While it is no guarantee, if someone you know has found significant help by seeing a specific counselor, chances are you will find that person helpful also. But don't think you must stay with a therapist just because you got started there. If you don't feel comfortable, or if you don't think you are being heard, or if you don't find the sessions helpful, find someone else.
If you are elsewhere, check the listings of professional organizations such as the United States Transactional Analysis Association (hot-link below) - where, if you're interested, you'll find my picture on my bio sheet. I'm a founding member and, for a time, served on the national governing counsel.
In addition, there are many other referral sites on the web. You might want to check out the listings of the Mental Health Net. The list is extensive - and I'm listed there too.
The important thing is to keep looking until you find someone who is right for you.
The entries below provide a place to begin:
Copyright 1996-2006 William W. Snow