3 crucial questions to ask a therapist BEFORE you hire them

‎3 crucial questions to ask a therapist before engaging their services…

1. Are you licensed? If the answer is no…..say “thank you for your time” and walk out the door!
There is little protection/recourse for a therapy client in the first place if therapy “goes wrong”, choose an unlicensed practitioner and you have no defense, unless of course the act is criminal.

2. Do you particpate in regular peer consultation/supervision or have a therapist yourself?… If the answer is no… say “thank you for your time” and walk out the door…
a good therapist will continually work on themselves to provide better services for you!

3. Have you ever had a complaint FILED against you? If the answer is anything other than no….again, thank the therapist for their time and walk out the door!
Answers such as… it was dismissed, found to be without merit, frivolous, baseless, the client filing it was unbalanced, etc. are NOT acceptable! The fact that a complaint was filed casts a significant doubt as to the trustworthiness of the therapist! Get up and leave! No further questions are necessary. There are typically ( unless you live in a very rural area) plenty of therapists to work with who have never had a complaint filed against them.

You can also check the licensing boards records in each State, however…be aware that only disciplinary actions are listed…a therapist can have 20 complaints filed against them without a single one resulting in disciplinary action! Cases are tough to prove, if they even make it past the initial review process!

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2 Responses

  1. Actually states tend not to license “therapists,” with the exception of Physical Therapists and Sex Therapists (falls under psychologists and counselors). In fact, in most states you can print up a business card and tell people you are an Art Therapist or a Spiritual Therapist – whatever type of therapist you want.

    People need to make sure they are dealing with licensed psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and counselors. Even in these areas, it is important to have someone with a “clinical” designation. For example, Licensed Clinical Social Worker will have the LCSW behind their name.

    You can usually go to the licensing board in your state to check-out the credentials of the clinician you are planning to see AND PLEASE, if they are not licensed and they are working as though they were a licensed psychologist, social worker or counselor, REPORT THEM TO THE STATE.

  2. Agreed P! People are not licensed as plain ol’ “therapists”. Writing out Licensed Mental Health Professional gets to be a bit cumbersome! So I went generic. I think the question “are you licensed” covers it! No license means buh-bye!

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