Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by amymb74, Jan 16, 2003.

  1. amymb74

    amymb74 New Member

    I've read in your posts that you are a therapist - I hope you don't mind me taking advantage & asking a few questions. I have been wanting to find a professional to talk to - my life, including my marriage is a mess, mostly because I make all of my decisions as a result of having cfids - scared to be alone etc. My mother & everyone else for that matter is sick of hearing about my health problems (can't blame them) I want someone to talk to & just help me make healthy decisions with my life. I'm an emotional wreck & am well aware of it - just can't seem to make a solid choice about anyone or anything. So, my question - what should I look up in the phone book? There are so mant kinds of letters after names - which are the kind you just talk to? I hope this makes sense - thank you. Amy
  2. catgal

    catgal New Member

    Hi Amy~~I've been a therapist for over 25 years, and I can tell you that regardless of all the "initials" after a therapist's name--each and every one of them have a different philosophy, educational bias, theological approach, and speciality to doing therapy. The important thing is to find a competent therapist that you trust and feel comfortable with.

    The best way to find a good therapist is by word-of-mouth. Ask around, and if people respond by giving you the same name over & over, and saying they had a good experience with this therapist--then try that one.

    However, if you get no responses from people then you can ask your health provider for a referral. Or, go through the yellow pages and take pot luck. There are psychiatrist which are medical doctors who have specialized in mental illness, and these are the most expensive per hour; psychologist who specialize in testing and also do therapy, and who charge less than psychiatrist, but can be still be quite expensive per hour; there are licensed clinical social workers who specialize solely in therapy, and are quite reasonably priced per hour, and then there are licensed professional counselors--but I would skip them.

    I would recommend a LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker) because their speciality is primarily helping normal people through difficult times and dealing with personal issues.

    However, each therapist regardless of credentials, will have a different therapeutic style, approach, philosophy, and personality type. Each comes from a different educational background. I would encourage you to find one that believes in a holistic approach to treating the client.

    When you call for an appointment, make sure the therapist is "licensed" to practice; ask if they use a holistic approach or what type of therapy they do or if they have a speciality; compare hourly prices (for they can vary greatly); would you be more comfortable with a male or female therapist; ask if they specialize in any particular type of therapy; and after calling and writing down the information on each one--see which one sounds the best to you.

    If you get a therapist that you do not feel safe with, trust, and feel comfortable with--find another therapist.

    Have in mind what you "expect" to get out of the therapy sessions and tell the therapist. Otherwise, you can spend alot of money just talking in sessions without going in a direction of resolution.

    Also, there are "indirect" and "direct" therapists. Indirect therapists are the kind that sit and shake their heads, nod, do little but ask questions, and offer little or no feedback. Direct therapists are interactive. They ask questions, but also give you feedback, and are more personable.

    The repore or relationship you have with your therapist is of utmost importance. It has a great deal to do with the resolution/healing process. There are alot of excellent therapists out there--and some that are worthless. So, find one that you like and suits your needs.

    A good therapist is not an authority figure, but should have an attitude of service as one human being with an area of expertise sharing & helping another human being. If you are made to feel "less than"--spend your money some place else.

    A good therapist can be a tremendous asset, support system, diagnostician, self-esteem booster, therapeutic tool, advocate, networking source, and resolution guide.

    If I can answer any other questions you might have--just give me a post. I'm glad to help. Best Wishes, Carol...
  3. amymb74

    amymb74 New Member

    for taking the time to explain all of this to me - it was really appreciated. I was away this weekend & didn't get your message until today. Now I am armed & ready to make calls tomorrow. Thanks again. Amy