View Full Version : How to fire a therapist?


charlie
09-12-04, 01:20 PM
After reading Draga's excellent thread How Can Therapy Change Me raises the following questions.

As mactavish posts
".., for licensed psychologists at least, it's unethical to work with a client who is already in active therapy with another therapist"
and
"Since the process of therapy is really more an "art" than a science, I can tell you that for years research has shown that the common sense notion of the rapport between therapist and client to be the most significant determining factor on the overall " success " of therapy. It s hard for science to measure abstracts but I think most people would agree that the right therapist, as Exeter so aptly put it, is what makes the difference in the end. Now you know that research confirms the obvious."


I was hoping to shop around have had one session that just tore me up mentally felt exhausted for the rest of the day. I know that probably means I have lots of issues that need to be discussed.

BUT if I'm not really 'clicking' and would like to try another one of the 6 that my physciatrist suggested. How do I do that? Just don't make another appt? Suggestions greatly appreciated!

exeter
09-12-04, 01:47 PM
If you decide to not continue with this particular therapist, I would suggest talking about it at the beginning of the next session after you decide to do so. The therapist will probably ask you why, and just be honest and say that you don't feel you're a good fit with him/her or his/her style of treatment.

Actually, if it's the style of treatment that isn't working for you, you might be able to switch gears with the therapist and begin using a different type, i.e. if you are doing a psychodynamic interpersonal therapy and feel that cognitive behavioral therapy might be more helpful, just say so.

In any case, you're best off discussing it with the therapist rather than just not scheduling another appointment. Not only does it give the therapist fair notice and a chance to close out any paperwork necessary, but you might feel better about doing it that way rather than just not showing up any longer.

charlie
09-12-04, 02:09 PM
Thanks for the reply exeter,
I'm just such a coward, hate hurting folk's feelings, if it feels confrontational I'm an avoidance personality! I know this is part of finally taking responsibilty and acting as an adult...but.

Truthfully this is only my 2nd attempt at getting help ever. I'm not even knowledgable enough to know the different therapy classifications that you mention.

And in the back of my mind is the idea any therapist rubbing their hands together with a "muuuhhaahaha". I have childhood issues that have never been discussed ever:( and I still don't feel strong enough to 'go there'!

Draga
09-12-04, 06:44 PM
After reading Draga's excellent thread How Can Therapy Change Me raises the following questions.

As mactavish posts
".., for licensed psychologists at least, it's unethical to work with a client who is already in active therapy with another therapist"
and
"Since the process of therapy is really more an "art" than a science, I can tell you that for years research has shown that the common sense notion of the rapport between therapist and client to be the most significant determining factor on the overall " success " of therapy. It s hard for science to measure abstracts but I think most people would agree that the right therapist, as Exeter so aptly put it, is what makes the difference in the end. Now you know that research confirms the obvious."


I was hoping to shop around have had one session that just tore me up mentally felt exhausted for the rest of the day. I know that probably means I have lots of issues that need to be discussed.

BUT if I'm not really 'clicking' and would like to try another one of the 6 that my physciatrist suggested. How do I do that? Just don't make another appt? Suggestions greatly appreciated!


How about before making appointment and costing ya money unless ya have better insurance than I do which is likely because I have none..Heh.. "Shopping Around" would be an understatement at most.

I am lucky to have found the doctor I see now...the others tended to have webbed feet if ya get my drift...Lots of Mulla wasted there..

Anywho I ramble on.......What I did was call doctors and talked to them one on one whether they treated ADHD and find out if they have their own website so maybe they have info on their degree's and experience ...or if they don't ask them one on one and see for yourself what kinda doctor they are and get all the info without leaving your house...Think of the gas $$ you'd save doing that :p ;)....Best I can think of hun. Hugsssss

charlie
09-12-04, 07:05 PM
Thanks Melly,
Yep 2nd best thing about my job is that I have insurance period! Of course the first best thing is a paycheck. Getting insurance is getting pretty hard to find with a job nowadays. Everyone wants to hire just part-timers so there's no insurance included.

I'll get around this issue somehow, especially with me writing it down. Otherwise I might have just continued trudging along even though I'm not estatic about going ever again.

Going for the strong mom not the hiding in the house mom, think it's time.

thanks!

Draga
09-12-04, 08:05 PM
Yep 2nd best thing about my job is that I have insurance period! Of course the first best thing is a paycheck. Getting insurance is getting pretty hard to find with a job nowadays. Everyone wants to hire just part-timers so there's no insurance included.

[ Land of the Free..home of the depraved and cheap money Wh....can't say it :mad: Why do they have to worry about thier pocket book before they worry about other human beings Who happen to work for them to make them money? Sorry just venting..






I'll get around this issue somehow, especially with me writing it down. Otherwise I might have just continued trudging along even though I'm not estatic about going ever again.

Now that U have addressed and identified the issue, it'll be easier. :)

Going for the strong mom not the hiding in the house mom, think it's time.
Atta gerl :D;)[B]

exeter
09-12-04, 10:29 PM
Thanks for the reply exeter,
I'm just such a coward, hate hurting folk's feelings, if it feels confrontational I'm an avoidance personality! I know this is part of finally taking responsibilty and acting as an adult...but.

I tend to be an avoidant type as well, so I have an idea how you feel. I don't think you're a coward. It took a lot of courage for you to even ask the question.

Avoidance is a perfectly valid defense mechanism. It works. That's why we use it. For example, I avoid driving in Northern Virginia around rush hour because of all the frustration I'd likely experience if I did.

For me, the problem came when I used it all the time... like, how I avoided past due notices from creditors because of all the anxiety I felt. All that did for me was get me more late fees and more past due notices and more anxiety.

I bet you're having a lot of anxiety just thinking about talking to your therapist about this particular issue. Would it help if I told you that therapists deal with this sort of thing on a routine basis? My therapist and I, in fact, agreed to "fire" each other if either one of us didn't feel there was a good rapport to build a therapy relationship on.

Also keep in mind, your therapist isn't your friend, and if you do decide to fire him or her, you only have to do it once, and you'll probably never see him or her again. (Even if you do run into your former therapist, you're under no obligation to talk to him or her. You can walk the other way or hide behind someone/something until he or she is gone if you want. :) I think avoidance would be okay in that situation. :-) )

Your feelings toward your therapist are legitimate. Therapy can be scary exactly for the reason you pointed out... you've probably never talked about some of this stuff at all before.

You probably wonder what your therapist will think of you if you tell about these things. Remember, though, you can't read minds. I've found that the only way to be sure about how someone else feels is to ask them.


Truthfully this is only my 2nd attempt at getting help ever. I'm not even knowledgable enough to know the different therapy classifications that you mention.

You don't have to. If you feel you're not getting the maximum possible out of therapy, just tell your therapist and maybe suggest you adjust your approach.


And in the back of my mind is the idea any therapist rubbing their hands together with a "muuuhhaahaha".
No ethical therapist will do that.

I wonder, what triggered that thought? I bet, if you think about that (and I also bet you won't have to think too long), then you might figure out whether you want to stop therapy, or if that reason is another issue you might want to deal with.

I have childhood issues that have never been discussed ever:( and I still don't feel strong enough to 'go there'!

You don't have to talk about anything in therapy that you don't feel comfortable talking about. Just say "I don't feel comfortable talking about that, can we talk about something else?"

It's okay to "ease into it," too.

Let me make up a random example. Let's just say my parents abused me physically when I was a child and I'm not comfortable talking about it with my therapist. I could tell him I'm not close to my parents. If he asks why (and, knowing my therapist, he probably would :D ), I could say I don't really feel comfortable talking about that.

Are you comfortable discussing other things with your therapist besides these issues you've never talked to anyone about before? I mean, do you trust him/her? Do you like him/her? You don't want to be in therapy with someone you don't trust or like. If you do both trust and like your therapist, then maybe it's worth continuing. After all, you've still got issues that are holding you back, right?

Is any of this helpful? I'm more than glad to offer any support I can. If you want to continue in private, or even on IM, that's ok, too. If you want to use IM, I don't know how much I'll be able to be around when you are, but I'll be glad to talk with you when I have the time. :)

Draga
09-12-04, 10:46 PM
Hugs, Charlie, I second what exeter said...

Ya do have to make sure you can trust the doc...It is easier to open up to someone if trust is there....but like I mentioned Before..only YOU can decide for yourself when the time is right for You to open up..and I speak from experience when that time comes and you do open up...the healing can begin and it not going to be an easy ride...But I can tell that you are a very strong woman and you already are half way there to the beginning...

And Like Exe(I Second again) if ya need to vent about anything at all...I'm here for ya too, shugga. :) You are Just SOOO Loved :D

mctavish23
09-12-04, 11:53 PM
Those were excellent posts. Thank you.

Draga
09-13-04, 02:07 AM
Those were excellent posts. Thank you.


:D Now can I have a cookie?????? :p

Draga
09-13-04, 04:03 AM
I tend to be an avoidant type as well, so I have an idea how you feel. I don't think you're a coward. It took a lot of courage for you to even ask the question.

I have become so avoidant I wont leave my house unless it is to go somewhere with mom and I rarely interact with ppl..if I don't have 2....if I do..I get the same *bleep*ing hassle I always get and Charlie U know better than that.,,there ain't no cowards here..

[QUOTE=exeter]For me, the problem came when I used it all the time... like, how I avoided past due notices from creditors because of all the anxiety I felt. All that did for me was get me more late fees and more past due notices and more anxiety.


We in the same club? Even when I had a job..getting crappy minimum wage, it always seemed I had this come up or someone needed money or needed things....I never had enough money for bills...I have caller ID....I never answer that phone unless I know it is someone I know...just to avoid harrasment from Bill collectors who called me irresponcible...blah blah blah...and eventually I have a collection of final notices in a box along w/ college loan that I never have had enough money to pay back and since I have been out of work for 2years.....Ummmm Maybe this is why shrink requested I not be my own Payee when I get SSI checks.....how much sence does this statement make.... If I had money I would file for bankruptcy.....Um Pardon em moi but if you are broke how the **** are u supposed 2 pay lawyer to file for not having money?????

Also keep in mind, your therapist isn't your friend, and if you do decide to fire him or her, you only have to do it once, and you'll probably never see him or her again. (Even if you do run into your former therapist, you're under no obligation to talk to him or her. You can walk the other way or hide behind someone/something until he or she is gone if you want. :) I think avoidance would be okay in that situation.
.

I did not have the best respect for most of my docs...except the one I am seeing now...there was no therapy....50 bucks a session to sit in her office and tell her information..She took notes(and got info all wrong) n then just give me presription and leave...Yep 45 minutes of the day I would never get back....I dunno..Do some shrinks think just cause they Give you meds they are off the hook with actual talking and giving advice? :rolleyes:


You probably wonder what your therapist will think of you if you tell about these things. Remember, though, you can't read minds. I've found that the only way to be sure about how someone else feels is to ask them..

I always felt it is not his/her job to be judgemental...but be supportive and to listen and help you any way he/she could or is that in an ideal world? :eek:




You don't have to talk about anything in therapy that you don't feel comfortable talking about. Just say "I don't feel comfortable talking about that, can we talk about something else?"

It's okay to "ease into it," too.

.Tell Shrink what ever is in you to tell him/her/quack when you are ready and not b/4 then, Shweetie...it's hard enough to say it w/o added pressure.

Is any of this helpful? I'm more than glad to offer any support I can. If you want to continue in private, or even on IM, that's ok, too. If you want to use IM, I don't know how much I'll be able to be around when you are, but I'll be glad to talk with you when I have the time. :)

[I] Hey Hey Hey! Don't Hog her, I wuv her too:p!

charlie
09-13-04, 09:02 AM
Thanks Melly, exeter and mactavish
ok I'm feeling stronger, thanks to your pumping me up with support
I really appreciate the help!
Ready to begin a new week with you all behind me for support I'm feeling hopeful!

mctavish23
09-13-04, 09:03 AM
For the record, therapists sometimes have to "fire" clients as well. If someone comes in looking for a "magic wand" where they just sit back and let the therapist or the medication , if applicalbe, do all the "work," then they are probably inappropriate for outpatient individual psychotherapy at that point in time. That doesn't mean "forever" but it does strike at the heart of ethical practice considerations. Continuing to work with someone who won't work in return is unethical and defeats the purpose.

charlie
09-13-04, 10:00 AM
If work is spilling your guts and taking therapists suggestions then I've done my part.

Truthfully my idea was to try a couple of therapists and see which one I clicked with. I zeroed in on the idea that maybe it was not going to be possible to change easily if I've started with any therapist already.

I'm sure each therapist has their specialties and I can learn from any of them.

It's a painful thought that things will be rehashed that I've not wanted to disclose to anyone before MORE than once.

Things will work out I'm motivated and it really really helps to glean all these words of wisdom and support from all!

Draga
09-13-04, 03:24 PM
Hugs, Charlie...I know it's going to be hard to open up that can of worms...but ya know we are here for ya...and read that thing I told ya to print out when u go to shrinks...I hope that helps too.

charlie
09-13-04, 09:03 PM
Melly thanks
I did read that great poem, it's the best!
Someone liked it so much I left it too long in the printer @ work and someone snagged it!
No problem I'll just reprint another;) Maybe they needed it too.

Draga
09-13-04, 09:37 PM
:) charlie.....I will put that poem on the web page to....It'll read..Dedicated to A Mom of 3 or..Ur name...hmmm?

shadowfax
09-30-04, 12:12 PM
I really feel for you, charlie, 'cause 6 months a ago I was exactly where you are now, facing therapy. I didn't really think I needed it 'cause things got much better when I started taking ADD medication. But after 7 years, certain "problems" just wouldn't go away. I didn't really know what to do about them.
Ironically, I ended up seeing the therapist we'd originally sought for my 12-year-old son, Adam, who also has ADD and was having some behavioral problems. After the therapist saw us 3 times, each separately and once together, he told me he could probably help my son by seeing him, but it'd be more beneficial if he saw ME first and helped me resolve my own issues.
Talk about surprised! I felt a little uneasy, but I said yes 'cause it would help Adam, too. Even though I'd seen several counselors before (for marriage, kids, etc.), I was pretty apprehensive. This would be just about me, and I knew having to open up and re-examine old wounds would hurt. But believe me, it's absolutely essential, if you want to truly heal those wounds, many of which have been "festering" for years.
But what I feared even more was finding out things about myself I DIDN'T know. At first I felt like I was standing at the edge of a huge black pit of "unknowns." I told the therapist that, and that I'd really need someone to "hold my hand" before going in there (i.e., take it really slow and easy).
My therapist was exceptional, probably the best I've ever dealt with. Of course he asked me questions, we talked, he gave feedback, etc. But he also asked insightful, thought-provoking questions that REALLY made me think.
I cannot tell you what a difference this therapy has made in my life. The amazing thing is how many "unknowns" I learned about myself that were positive, not negative (as I'd feared). Plus, learning this has helped me deal more effectively with the "known" problems/issues I have.
In other words, I think many if not most of the preconceived notions you might have about therapy are probably inaccurate--but for reasons you really can't know until after you've been at it a few months. I'm still seeing my therapist, and will probably do so for 6 more months to get the full benefit.
I really encourage you to take that first step, charlie. It's not easy, I know. But I'm sure you, like me, will feel such relief, like you've relieved your mind of some tremendous burdens. As a result, you'll be able to GROW in a way you never thought possible before.
Good luck, and pls let me know how you're doing. I care!

caj
09-30-04, 01:22 PM
Hi Charlie- A little inside scoop from a therapist... each therapist has to find a mode of therapy that resonates within them and makes sense to them, this is the mode that they (predominantly) use to guide their practice. For me, it is person-centered therapy (also called client-centered). The main concepts are (1) congruence (being genuine and real), (2) unconditional positive regard (being accepting and caring), (3) accurate empathic understanding (an ability to deeply grasp the subjective world of the client). One of the most important goals for the therapist is to create an atmoshere of trust, where the client doesn't feel scared or judged, and through this trust the client starts to become open to the ideas of sharing and trusting themselves, thus facilitating self-awareness and growth. There are many different theories of counseling. Cognitive-behavioral is (briefly) assisting the client in changing their negative thoughts (cognitions) to ones that are more suitable. Psychodynamic will go back to your infancy and childhood and look at unresolved conflicts and places where your devlopment is "stuck". These are super brief descriptions, and there are many more theories. Many therapists use an eclectic approach, taking bits and pieces of what they find useful from different theories and grounding them in one main theory. (I do this).
Don't be too concerned about hurting the therapist's feelings (it seems like this is a concern for you). It's perfectly okay for you to say that you just don't feel it is a good fit. If the therapist cares about you (and I surely hope they do) they will want what is best for you! I agree with Draga that this can be accomplished in a phone call if money is an issue (and it usually is). But I also agree that closure is a good idea, so don't just blow the person off. Before you search for another therapist, I suggest you do a little research on thories of counseling so that you have an idea of what you are looking for. Calling different therapists and asking them a few questions will give you a better sense of who they are and what theories they align with. Hope this is helpful- I wish you all the best!!