Most people go to therapists hoping that the therapist will be a right fit for them. They might get in there, really like the therapists personality, feel that it is the right fit, and then leave the office feeling that they got nothing out of the session. Many people see the therapist as someone who they should not question. Perhaps they have in their mindset that you should not question authority. I would recommend that people go into therapy with an open mind and willing to try different things the therapist is suggesting. However, if they try techniques and it does not seem to work, it is important to give the therapist a map, so to speak, about what feels right for you. I would suggest not being afraid to ask a really quiet therapist to talk more or to ask a really talkative therapist to listen more. If it still isn’t a fit, it might be time to find a new therapist that feels right to you.
A few questions you may want to ask a prospective therapist: (by the way, there are no “right” answers”, just answers that might fit what you are looking for more than other answers).
1. How much do you know about my problems (e.g. Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Trauma, Relationship Issues)?
2. What is your therapy style (interactive, passive)?
3. Does the therapist treat issues by looking into childhood issues or by looking the problems now and fixing them without delving into childhood issues?
4. What is the therapists’ view on medication? For example: Does the therapist encourage (or push) medication or are they supportive about what you want?
5. Does the therapist offer a free phone consult so that you can check them out?
One last note: When you call a therapist, don’t just make an appointment with them. Interview them (use the questions above as a guide) so that you don’t waste your time going into a session with someone who you will feel uncomfortable with.
If you are looking for an individual therapist or couples therapist in Long Beach, please give me a call to ask me a question or to set up an appointment.