MAKES A GOOD MATCH?
(Adapted with permission from "Creating a Different
Future, revised" by the Consortium for Psychotherapy)
It's Okay to Ask For What You Want
Finding the right therapist for you is an important process.
Think about any preferences you may have. Would you work better with
a woman or a man; with someone older or close in age; with someone from
the same religion or ethnic group? You may have a preference or you
We have a diverse network of providers from various racial, ethnic,
religious backgrounds. We can also refer you to a gay identified therapist,
or a therapist with a feminist or spiritual orientation. Many of our
members provide therapy in other languages, such as ASL, Spanish, French,
German, Greek, Italian, Hungarian, Hebrew, Russian, Swahili, and Korean.
The Referral Service can provide you with
the names of one or more therapists, as well as information about their
training and experience. When you meet with a therapist you can ask
more about their training, experience, theoretical orientation and whether
they have helped other clients with problems similar to yours. Ask how
they tend to work, and decide whether it matches how you would like
How Do I Know if it's a Good Match?
Pay attention to how you feel with the counselor. Do you seem to "click"
with him or her? Does he or she treat you with respect and consideration?
Do you feel comfortable and safe in his or her presence? Does he or
she ask questions that are on target for you? Can you see yourself working
closely with this person over a period of time? It's important to pay
attention to your initial "gut" feelings; once the therapy
gets underway, your feelings about the counselor may be complicated
by other issues from your history and in your life. If uncomfortable
feelings do arise later in therapy, be sure to talk with your therapist
Continue to Evaluate the Match
If you have met with several therapists, take some time to make up your
mind. It is a matter of courtesy to also inform the other therapists
with whom you met that you have chosen another therapist. Think of the
first few sessions as a mutual evaluation: the therapist is evaluating
your situation and developing a treatment plan, and you are evaluating
whether you feel comfortable with the therapist's approach.
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