I have been in therapy since I was 13-years-old and have seen six different therapists throughout the past 10 years of my mental health investment. When I was younger, I didn’t understand the point of therapy and I only went once a month to talk for an hour about my parents, but I did not make progress and I was left untreated. Fast forward to this day, I attend therapy twice a month and dissect my life with my therapist who wants to see me get better and understands how badly my trauma over the past 10 years effects my daily life. With that being said, I want to tell you that choosing to go to therapy is amazing and its you being selfless choosing to get better to become a better person for this world. The trick to having an effective experience is settling for the right therapist who you think is best for you. I want to share my experiences with therapists over the last couple of years and share some insightful questions you should ask yourself when picking a therapist.
asking yourself the questions
Your therapist is someone who should challenge you to be better but not push you to the edge. They should let you talk but your sessions shouldn’t be just spilling the tea, they should be engaging with you and asking the hard questions that help you process. In my opinion, your therapist should feel like a mom or someone you really trust. You should feel safe and feel like you are being heard while learning to grow at the same time. I don’t think a therapist should reaffirm everything you say because they’re being submissive since you need to work on yourself. Here are some questions you should ask yourself as you pick your therapist.
- Does he/she ask me about past life?
- Does he/she let me talk?
- Does he/she let me talk but gives insightful thoughts on the topic?
- Does he/she make time for me knowing I am feeling unstable?
- Does he/she challenge me?
- Does he/she work through my problems to understand them?
- Can you confide in them?
- Can you tell them the deepest things that are hard to say to others?
My therapist reviews
My therapist will have names and their names will stay confidential.
This therapist was the first I ever had and it was the time I didn’t understand how to fully grow in therapy. I also didn’t know that there were deeper meanings to the happenings in my life. She let me talk about everything that was on my mind. I only met with her once a month when I should have been meeting with her more than that. I think I was too young and lost in general, but the therapist should have been more concerned.
After therapist one left the facility, I was placed with therapist two who introduced me to techniques and deeper meanings of the things I was experiencing. She taught me breathing techniques because I was easily triggered at the time. I also learned that I had trigger words that would upset me. This was the first time I started to dissect and understand the things I was experiencing. I learned the toxicity that was in my life and how to handle it. I definitely didn’t have a grip on it after this, but it was a step in the right direction.
When I moved to Hawai’i I had to find a new therapist. It was scary, but this woman was life changing. I wrote an article last semester about how much she influenced my life. She encouraged me to grow, find light in spiritual growth, the beauty of being a woman, to work on my trauma, and overall supported me but kept me in my place. I’ve always considered her as my mom in Hawai’i.
I don’t have much to say other than he helped me with trauma by doing EMDR: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It focused on my trauma and processing. I switched in between therapist four and three during this time.
This is my current therapist who I also admire. He works with me and challenges me to make my own decisions. He is very similar to therapist three. He is very realistic with me and acknowledges my trauma.
If you can’t say the same things I said about therapist two, three and five, then you may have not found the right therapist. Never settle, love where you are.