Entering therapy is a great opportunity to grow and overcome past challenges. Many conditions, including depression, anxiety, OCD, PTSD, and even schizophrenia can be improved or even eliminated with the help of a skilled therapist. However, therapy also has its challenges. Many people are not quite sure what to expect from therapy. A good therapist will have the training and experience to help you overcome your mental health challenges, but therapists are also human, with their own strengths, biases, and blind spots. There’s no guarantee that your therapist will be a good fit for you, even if she is, by any reasonable standard, a good therapist. So what do you do if you don’t like your therapist? The first thing to keep in mind is that you should never tolerate unprofessional or unethical behavior from your therapist. Most therapists are professional, ethical, and fully committed to helping their clients. They may lose their licenses for bad behavior. However, there are bad actors out there, however rare. If your therapist makes sexual advances, asks you to do anything unethical, or violates confidentiality, stop seeing that person immediately. That said, it can take a little time to know whether a therapeutic relationship will be productive. It takes some time to become comfortable sharing personal information with someone who is essentially a stranger. It may take some time for your therapist to get a clear picture of what’s causing you trouble. Keep in mind in this early period, that whether or not you like your therapist is secondary to whether or not your therapist can help you. You don’t have to be best friends; you just have be able to work together. If you get to a point where you feel like you’ve given your therapist a fair shot and you don’t feel like you will develop a good working relationship, tell your therapist what’s on your mind. She should be willing to discuss your concerns. If you can’t reach an understanding, you may want to ask for a referral to another therapist. No one likes to lose a client, but a good therapist will want to act in your best interest, even if that means sending you to someone else. It’s entirely possible that someone else, with different strengths or different experience will be able to help you better. If you’re trying to decide whether or not to raise your concerns with your therapist, think carefully about whether you really don’t like your therapist, or if you might just feel challenged by therapy. Therapy often requires some degree of discomfort, whether from confronting buried feelings, opening up about things you might feel ashamed of, or challenging long-held beliefs. A skilled therapist won’t push you too hard, but there will inevitably be some tough moments. If you feel dissatisfied with your therapist, be sure you’re not just feeling challenged by therapy itself before you consider making a change. If you do make a change, you will have to spend time establishing a relationship with a new therapist, so be sure it’s worth the effort.
If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction or mental illness, we can help. Recovery Ways is a premier drug and alcohol addiction treatment facility located in Salt Lake City, Utah. We have the resources to effectively treat a dual diagnosis. Our mission is to provide the most cost-effective, accessible substance abuse treatment to as many people as possible. Request information online or call us today at 1-888-986-7848.