How to Find a Good Therapist
Here are suggestions from the Academic Council of Southwestern College on how to find a good therapist:
- Seek referrals from people you trust – ask your friends, social network, fellow students and colleagues who they have found to be helpful.
- Just because a therapist is great for someone else, they might not work out for you. Do not be afraid to let a therapist know that you are still looking and won’t be making another appointment. This is a great learning opportunity to find someone who helps you meet your needs.
- You may also request a brief, initial, unpaid meeting of 15-20 minutes to check out this potentially very significant relationship. You might consider the location, setting, cost of services, relational style and your gut feeling. Is this therapist right for you at this time?
- If you are looking for a particular kind of therapist who uses a specific approach, you can use an online search engine to find names.
- A national tool that can be useful is the Psychology Today website which will include profiles, descriptions, and additional information of therapeutic practitioners in your area.
- Once you have found the name of someone who seems like a potential fit for you, you could see if they have a LinkedIn or Facebook profile.
- They might also have an individual website. All of these electronic sources will provide additional information.
- You can also ask around to find out if anyone has heard of these professionals, and whether they would recommend them.
For Our Students
- Remember that your therapist must be licensed. If you have ANY question about this, please refer to the back of the personal therapy documentation form for a list of the kinds of therapeutic professionals you can see to meet this requirement. Please ask to make sure your therapist fits one of these categories.
- You may also ask whether the therapist has a sliding scale or reduced fees for students. Many of our alumni do this for our students.
- You may also ask other contacts you have made locally, including our staff and faculty. Ask them to give you more than one name so they do not find themselves in the uncomfortable position of making a single recommendation. They might not provide names, but certainly you can ask!
- Remember our faculty cannot serve in this capacity due to the potential for conflicting dual relationships. However, they have numerous contacts throughout the community.