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OT: Psychotherapy

I am considering going to a psycotherapist. The trouble is I dont know how to find a good one?
Also I am confused.. Not sure if I really need one, or whether I can work it out myself. How does it help?

Wed. Oct 4, 11:22am

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i went to a local clinic and spoke with a social worker who helped me to figure out what i was most having trouble with, ie: my family relations, anxiety, mood swings, self-harm thoughts. she then directed my to a couple of local psychotherapists who deal primarily with my issues. it was very helpful being directed to someone who is familiar with my problems, rather than flipping through a phone book and endind up with someone who specializes in drug abuse, say. and the clinic social worker was able to give me some tips about what to expect. i gained some valuable tools to further look into myself and learned to look at my problems a little more objectively after many visits. however, i also developed a bit of cynicism since i felt that the only person who i could turn to for an ear was someone i had to pay. all in all, i think it was very useful for the amount of stress i felt like i was dealing with and now i have a new set of guidelines with which to judge my hardships-and that helps me get through tough times. it certainly didn't make matters any worse. and it boosted my confidence a bit in the beginning because i knew i was doing something to at least try to help myself.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006, 11:44 AM

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What do they do to be helpful? Just talk to you and give you tips on how to approach problems?
Or do they help by giving medication or some thing else to lessen the stress???

Thursday, October 05, 2006, 5:07 AM

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for me, just being able to talk without the fear of family dynamics getting in the way of expressing myself was relief in itself. saying things out loud that i've never dared bring up in "real life" because of others' potential reactions also reduced some stress. and even after what felt like confessing to me, to not feel like i was being judged, to not feel like i was the first person to say these types of things to the therapist, made me feel better and more accepting of my problems. the isolation one feels can sometimes become overwhelming and for me the realization that many other people were going through their own mental struggles (i mean, there they were, in the waiting room), made me more comfortable with not being able to attack every problem head-on. the drive to and from the therapy sessions also gave me time to really focus on ways to cope rather than feeling burdeoned by all of the stress.

Thursday, October 05, 2006, 9:20 AM

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do you have health insurance and a pcp (primary care physician)? if you do, then the best way to find a good therapist is to see your pcp and get a referral. usually your pcp will really know who the good ones are in your community, and if you do have health insurance they often require a referral from your pcp before they'll pay for a visit to a therapist.

Thursday, October 05, 2006, 9:37 AM

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If you have any friends or acquaintances who have been in therapy, I would ask for suggestions. Ask your primary care physician is another good idea. And your health insurance company might have a list of providers in your area.

In any case, one thing I would suggest is setting up initial consultations with at least three different people. If you've never been to therapy before and you meet with one person and feel weird about it, you may just think it's because you are new to talking about your personal life with a therapist. If you meet three different people, highlight what some of your concerns are and ask what kind of approach they might take, if they've worked with people who had similar concerns, etc., you will get a feel for the differences between the therapists. I just started therapy (I'd been in before) last fall and interviewed hree people before settling on one. One guy was ok but I didn't feel he was right, one guy was downright creepy - like a character out of the Adams Family, and finally, with the therapist I finally chose to begin working with, something just clicked.

Good luck!

Friday, October 06, 2006, 7:04 AM

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There are different types of therapy. I would take Cognitive Behavioural Therapy over Freudian psychoanalysis any day. The latter can make you feel worse and lasts forever. The former has clear goals and is not meant to last more than 10 sessions or so.

Friday, October 06, 2006, 11:36 AM

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I have been going to one for the last two years and I can say that I am now a much positive person. I am happier and take life less seroiusly.

Also, if you think you are the sensitive kind, the one-who-feels-bad-for-innocent-things, it might be a good idea. All the best and keep us posted

Monday, October 09, 2006, 12:45 AM

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