Did you just read What Do I Look For In A Therapist? Are you thinking, “Yes, OK, that sounds good, but what if I’ve been in therapy already, maybe more than once, and it didn’t help? Should I even bother to try again?”
It’s extremely discouraging to try to get help and have that help fail you. You’re probably convinced you’ll never find a therapist who will understand you or is worthy of your trust. Worse, you might think: “Maybe I’m hopeless.” Even worse yet, maybe you had a therapist who blamed you; who said something like: you aren’t willing to change or open up. That’s very hurtful.
It’s a therapist’s responsibility to compassionately understand your struggles. Plus, there are good reasons for having a hard time trusting and being open. Sometimes there are fears from early disappointments. Those need to be sensitively understood. Sometimes it’s the ineffectiveness or judgment of a particular therapist. Criticalness is not good therapy.
Maybe I’m making some sense. But, even so, you’re probably also thinking: “How am I supposed to trust you?” That’s a reasonable question. You’re not supposed to trust me. How could you? You’ve been let down. Trust takes time. Trust is a matter of building on good experiences session by session.
There are many good therapists. There are also many therapists who aren’t able to understand and work with the complex ways that some symptoms are expressed. This could take the form of feelings that either have overwhelming intensity or are hidden away as if they don’t exist. And, there are symptoms that are stubbornly unrelenting.
It’s up to a therapist to find new ways to understand and help you work out what hasn’t yet been sufficiently understood. It’s not up to you. But when you’ve tried and haven’t been able to get the help you need, it isn’t unusual to believe it’s your fault – particularly if you became angry and frustrated. There’s nothing wrong with that. Anger should be part of any good therapy.
More than anything, a good therapist accepts and helps you make sense of whatever feelings you bring. They do make sense, even if you don’t believe that right now. Setting aside past failed experiences is understandably difficult. Yet, if you can find the courage to try again, help is possible. Do you have questions and doubts? Please call for a telephone consultation. I’m here to talk.