How To Find a ‘Right Fit’ Therapist
Reaching out for help is hard! And then trying to find a therapist that will work best with you can be an additional stress! How do you know if a therapist is right for you and what can you do? There’s a few different options and ways to go about it.
BEFORE the first session
If you’re battling serious mental health issues, the biggest step can be getting in the room (or telehealth room) with a therapist. If that’s you, reaching out is a great place to be. Everything else here in the article is additional. That therapist may be a good fit for you, or maybe they will be the first step in getting you even better care (referrals for other doctors, or even therapists).
If you’re feeling like you want and are able to take a few more steps, here are some other ideas-
Look on Psychology Today
Get a sense for the therapist’s overall vibe and see if you resonate with their bio. If they don’t have a Psychology Today profile, you can check the individual organization’s website to see if their therapists have a bio.
Check out the therapist’s specialities and expertise on Psychology Today, as well! You can see if they generally work with issues like ones you are experiencing.
Check to see if your potential therapist accepts your insurance, or any other ways you will be paying.
Setting Your Own Expectations
Finding a therapist can be like dating! So, your first therapist may not be the one that is the best fit for you.
It can take a while (many sessions or even months) to build a great relationship with your therapist.
You will not hurt your therapist’s feelings if you do not want to continue with them.
Overall, a therapist will most likely not give you advice or tell you what to do because a therapist cannot know the exact right thing for you because they are not you 🙂
You might feel awkward in the first session because it is a whole new experience. That’s totally normal.
DURING the first session
Ask your therapist any questions you want to know about their approach to therapy, or even logistical questions.
That’s it! Therapy is about your process, so there is no way to do it wrong.
AFTER the first (or first few) sessions
Check in with yourself
This also can be a hard thing to do so here are some potential questions you could ask yourself-
How did I feel with my therapist? Did I feel like myself sitting in the room with them?
Do I feel like they understood my problem?
How do I feel going forward with this therapist?
What do I feel like I need?
If necessary, breaking up with your therapist
Your therapist wants you to find healing however you can and so if it is not with them, that is okay. If you’re not sure, you can always bring your doubts to your therapist to discuss as well.
All in all, your therapist will be okay if you do not want to see them anymore.
Finding a therapist can be a journey, just like therapy itself. Even if you’ve been with your therapist a while and felt like they were a match in the past, sometimes what you need and, therefore, the ‘right fit’ can change. And that’s okay.
Written by: Abby Matt, LPCC