How to decide what kind of therapy to do?

Although I’ve been in therapy, uhm, most of my life, I’ve never thought about what kind of therapeutic approach it’s been that has been used in my sessions.

I’ve done what’s either been forced upon me, or what I’ve found at the time, and so now that I’m actually looking for a therapist, I have no idea where to start!

I’ve been Googling therapy in my area with key words like Borderline Personality Disorder and Sexual Abuse, but soooo many people pop up and it is just so confusing!

I definitely don’t want to contact the people that the psychiatrist two weeks ago recommended – I can’t find much information on them, and the work Social Work scares me – I don’t need a social worker! How can someone even be a therapist and a social worker at the same time?!

I think psychoanalytic sounds good to me, but I’m not sure. I definitely do not wanna do CBT ever again, but all these other words are so vague – Existential, Interpersonal, Integrative…What do they even mean??

So I stillllllll have not even started calling around – there’s lots of people in Miami offering counselling, but I don’t have a clue who The Right One would be 😦

Anyone else with good experiences with a certain type of therapy want to share their insights?

If you’re a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, what’s worked? What have you liked?

Thanks so much!

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4 thoughts on “How to decide what kind of therapy to do?

  1. My therapist started out as a social working and, more often than not, they are the front line folks who end up dealing with most of the therapy related issues in hospital anyway (example, they provide support to transplant patients who are having a hard time coping with someone else’s organs living inside their body!). I don’t think it’s their major that is in question, but what sort of therapy they have experience in.

    I have complex ptsd so when I searched that in my area I came up with my therapist as she’s done a fair amount of EMDR therapy, which is where I started. I found it very helpful, some find it useless….it was just a place to start. Our therapy went from there to psychoanalytic and now we mostly go over coping mechanisms for the chronic pain. I think the most important thing is that you like your therapist on the whole, as a person and how she works with you. Try one who is close and work from there. Also…try not to put too much hope on one therapist or another…it may take a little time to feel comfortable with them. It took me well over a year to start doing therapy that really helped me along with the EMDR.

    I was sexually abused, but that’s not the thing my therapy revolved around so I don’t have much to say there, other than, if you’re comfortable with the one who is helping you process all this info…you’ll be fine with the sexual stuff too.

    Keep going forward my friend! You’re making great steps and I know you’ll come through this all the better in the end. *hugs tight*

  2. Hi! And thank you for the great advice!! So. I finally plucked the courage to call our health insurance provider to find out what they’d cover, to get this whole thing started from that end, and to my surprise, it seems that I’d just have the usual copay of $20 per session, and there is no limit on the length of therapy! This is such good news because I’ve heard of some insurance not covering more than short-term therapy and stuff like that. With my insurance, therapy is even cheaper than it would have been in the UK with a private provider! (Public ones on the national health service is free of course there which is why I had done 18 months of three times a week psychoanalysis…)

    Anyway, so I am finally getting the ball rolling. FINALLY. Don’t think I could have done it without your advice! I’ve been on psychologytoday.com reviewing therapists and their expertise areas, and Googled therapy in my area, and getting a few ideas and I think tomorrow I will start calling some in-network providers near me to see if they’d take me…

    Thank God. I really do want to start therapy but have been procrastinating – sometime it is sooooo hard to start from scratch! I think it’ll get better once I find someone and actually get started…

    On another note, M and I are going to go to a couples workshop for newlyweds, and I had mentioned couples therapy and he seemed okay about it, yet I’d just rather have a few sessions with a pastor or something instead of seeing like a proper therapist with him together.

    All in it’s own time. Thank you again for the support! It is so good to get advice from someone who’s done it too and it is working out for them!

  3. Hi! I’ve been in therapy for complex PTSD for the past nine months. I am a CSA survivor. I have found DBT (dialectical behavior therapy) to be beyond helpful. I’m finishing up therapy with my current psychologist in a month and I’ve been referred to a psychologist that specializes in adolescent girls and sexual abuse… even thought I’m 30 years old.. lol. I suppose I’m still a child inside. I hope this helps! ((hugs))

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