So you've decieded to begin therapy...
Updated: Jul 19, 2021
"Our wounds are often the openings into the best and most beautiful parts of us".
First let me say congratulations. I know personally how dificult that decision can be. Coming to the realization that you are having some feelings that may be difficult to manage and. you are in need of some assistance is my definition of having courage. Congratulations the hard part is over. Well, maybe not completely over.
“Our greatest story is not in never failing, but in raising every time we fall.” -Confucius
The journey of finding the right therapist for you can be a long one. You start with a google search and click on psychology today or zocdoc and see pages of therapist. You may feel overwhelmed and confused not knowing what all these terms mean. Exhausted from reading bios from various therapist and anxious because now you may be wondering if you made the right decision. Here are so helpful tips of things to consider.
5 Things to Consider When Looking for A Therapist.
What difficulties are you struggling with?
Having some type of knowledge of your difficulties can make the therapist search much easier. This way you can look for therapist who specialize or have experience in that difficulty.
Contact your insurance and ask them to send you a list of providers in network.
Call the behavioral health services number on the back of your insurance card. As them to send you a list of mental health providers in your area that are in-network. From there you can contact providers and ask them if they are accepting new clients.
If you are using google to find a therapist be specific so you can see various options.
If you are using google to find a therapist be specific so you can see various options. ugh multiple pages. If gender, race/ethnicity and or speciaty matter you be sure to include that in your search.
Know the difference between someone that accepts your insurance (in-network) and out-of-network.
When I first got my own insurance, I did not know the difference between in-network and out-of-network providers. In-network are providers that accept your insurance so you may have to pay a co-pay or nothing at all. Out-of network providers are individuals who do not accept your insurance. Before you contact an out-of-network provider contact your insurance and see if you have out-of-network benefits.
If you do have OON benefits and choose to see an OON provider, you will pay for services out of pocket and later be reimburse by your insurance. Typically insurance will reimburse 80% of the full price of the service. However, every insurance provider is different do make sure you call and verify before scheduling an appointment with a provider.
Understand that there are different therapist with different specialties
When looking up therapist you may see different acroyms like LMHC, LCSW, LMFT, LMSW, MHC-LP, DSW, CSAC, and DR Here is what they mean below. Different acronmys not only mean that the providers have a specialty but also have a different form edcuational training regarding their approach to therapy.
LMHC -Licensed Mental Health Counselor
LCSW - Licensed Clinical Social Worker
LMFT - Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
LMSW - Licensed Masters of Social Work
MHC-LP - Mental Health Counselor - Limited Permit
DSW - Doctor of Social Work
CSAC - Certified Substance Abuse Counselor
DR. Can be Psychologist or Psychiatrist.
Wow, that was a lot right!
“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person's point of view and see things from that person's angle as well as from your own.” - Henry Ford
So, hear we are you have finally found a therapist and you are preparing for your first session. Congratulations! Remember to keep an open mind. Therapist can be emotionally and physically exhausting. Unpacking trauma is not easy and sometimes you may leave a session in not the best mood but, that is okay. Overtime as you start to release those feelings that have been building up thinks will start to feel easier. Like I also say the goal of therapy is not to fix someone but to give them the tools so they can manage and lead emotionally successful lives.
Tata for now!
- Your Therapist Favorite Therapsist