What If I Don’t Like My Therapist?

You can find a therapist who is a good match for you by initially doing your homework. Think about what you are looking for ahead of time.  Write down what is most important to you so you have your questions ready for an initial phone call.  Getting a referral from a friend who likes their therapist can help narrow your search. Your first phone conversation can bring you a measure of relief. You are finally going to get some help. Your first meeting goes well, as they gather information about you. What if something happens in the second or third session and you decide you are uncomfortable with the therapist?  

It is a good idea to give your therapy a number of sessions before you make any decisions about ending your work with the therapist. The therapist will also consider if they can work with you or not. You might provide information in which the therapist thinks a certain kind of specialist would better serve you due to their training. If they know they can’t help you they are ethically bound make a reference for you and end your sessions.

Putting unethical therapist boundary issues aside, there may be unseen factors that influence the way you feel about your therapist. Projection and transference are two dynamics that can happen as you and your therapist build a relationship. Projection is when you transfer your own feelings, unconsciously, onto the other person—in this case, the therapist. If you have negative feelings about yourself, you could project them onto your therapist. Transference is when you unconsciously transfer feelings from someone in the past onto your therapist.

In the therapeutic relationship, you may feel the therapist has all the power. They know everything about you, and you know nothing about them. The purpose of this boundary is to keep the focus on you. You can feel angry about this and confuse the anger and unfairness you perceive about therapy with how you feel about the therapist.

Therapists ask questions that lead and guide you. The therapeutic process may trigger memories you don’t like or don’t want revealed. After a session like that you may not want to continue the work. These feelings are normal.  Therapy is hard. And you can work with your therapist on pacing the sharing of difficult memories and experiences.  Therapy dredges up old feelings and wounds, and with a trusting relationship and hard work, brings them into the light to set you free.

Therapists are human, too. They have bad days, like you. If you thought your last session was awful, tell them. If they are a good therapist they will appreciate your feedback. The most important thing is to be honest with yourself and your therapist, change, grow and own your feelings.

At last, infinite recovery is finally attainable. Creating infinite change through clinical programs and holistic healing, Infinity Treatment Centers offers a higher standard of luxury care for residential, intensive outpatient, and much more. Call us today for information on our treatment programs serving the greater Los Angeles area: (855) 544-0611

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