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How would you find a good therapist? What would you look for and what are they called?

(8 Posts)
Beenleigh Mon 06-Aug-07 19:20:28

I want someone with all the right accreditations, but don't really know after that. There are so many different names for them, and before I embarked upon research proper, I thought that here would ab good place to start.
I don't want someone who just sits there and thinks about the weather or sex or chocolate whilst I work through issues on my own? Any ideas, or ideas about where to look?
I'd be very grateful.

Ags Mon 06-Aug-07 19:37:57

I used to work in the field of Counselling and Hypnotherapy. If you are looking for a pshychotherapist (ie. someone you can talk to about whatever issues you have) the best place to look is The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy And to ensure you get someone with loads of experience, get an accredited counsellor (this ensures that the therapist has provided proof of many many many hours of therapy experience).

On the website you can search for therapists in your area and then look at each individually to see what sort of therapist they are. For instance you could have a cognitive behavioural therapist or a transactional analysis therapist - there is your research!! You will have to work out which sort is best for you.

I hope you do mean this sort of therapist and aren't looking for something completely different. I will feel a bit of a div if that is the case!!

Hope you find someone great.

Beenleigh Mon 06-Aug-07 19:41:53

Oh yes, this is EXACTLY what I was hoping for. Thanks so much. That's brilliant! Ace!

Ags Mon 06-Aug-07 19:47:55

Oh I'm glad I could help. Best of luck with it all.

themothership Wed 08-Aug-07 21:21:57

Hi Beenleigh

I'd second Ags' recommendation re: the BACP, and also add the UKCP, which has a similar search function on their website

The BACP and UKCP are the two main accreditation bodies within the UK - from my understanding, the UKCP requirements for accreditation are slightly more stringent (i.e. more hours of supervision etc.). As Ags mentions, there are a number of different approaches, and it's important that you find the right one for you. I'd recommend 'interviewing' a number of therapists before you decide who you want to work with.

Good luck!


vonsudenfed Wed 08-Aug-07 21:43:47

Are you in London? Because if you are, you will be spoilt for choice; if not, it's a bit harder.

I went through this a while ago (in London), and so, sadly, can't remember the details. But I went through one of the organisations who gave me an assessment session (I went and met a lovely older woman, and told her why I thought I wanted therapy etc) and they then recommended me someone - but said if I didn't like her, to come back and they would recommend someone else. As it turned out I liked her very much, and I saw her for a couple of years and it made a huge difference to my life and I can't recommend it too highly.

This might help. Not sure if this was where I started, but it looks like it.

Perhaps one way to think about what you want is, what kind of therapy you are expecting, and what you want from it. Are you thinking of open-ended, 'classic' therapy for a couple of years, or do you want something more results based and shorter term? Is there a particular issue or phobia that you want to deal with (in which case you might want to find someone with experience of it) or a more general reassessment of life.

Fwiw, incidentally, my therapist, although v old-school, never ever sat back and thought about the weather, she was always challenging me and jumping in and so on!

Heathcliffscathy Wed 08-Aug-07 21:50:13

Go through BACP and UKCP if someone has accreditation through either of these you can at least be assured that they ahve trained for a minimum of 4 years and that there is a grievance process and code of ethics that they must adhere to.

best bet is to go through recommendation....I found that first go round I got someone through the website and this time I got someone via recommendation....this time round the therapy has really kicked in!!!!

finally, see or at least talk to several, and go with the one that clicks with you (which may not be the easiest one to talk to, it might be the one that 'gets in there' the most). you have to feel some kind of affinity ime. people put a lot of effort into finding the right hairdresser....this is infinitely more important and should be treated as such.

Neuro Wed 15-Aug-07 11:03:34

Hi Beenleigh
I saw your thread and wanted to send you a reply. The advice above is correct, go through the BACP. At present counsellors and therapists do not have to have any training! So anyone, and i mean literally anyone can put a sign up outside their door which says Jo Bloggs Counsellor.
I myself am a trainee counsellor and am still 4 years away from getting degree. At the very minimum a decent counsellor will have a diploma PLUS another qualification that 'ethically' allows them to practice privately.
Like the person who said about how we shop around for the right hairdresser, you shouldn't be afraid to see a few counsellors if the ones you see don't feel right.
The thing about counselling and psychotherapy is that it shouldnt' be about YOU, the client, sitting in a room working through stuff on your own. A good therapist will be alongside you, and the journey into you, the client's self awareness, will be a shared one. Also, a good therapist should make you feel that he or she totally accepts you as you are now, as well as what you hope to become as a result of therapy, but without taking on your issues themselves.
In 2012 all practising counsellors will by law have to be accredited.
Good luck and be brave, but do go through the BACP or CPCAB. Anyone worth their salt will have accreditation and will be totally open to you asking them about how long they have practiced, what they specialise in etc etc. Anyone who is moody or a bit vague, well, they're not worth seeing!

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