This is advice that I would give to a relative who was trying to find a helping professional for counseling.

  1. Perhaps the best guide in selecting a counselor is your own reactions to the help you receive in an actual session. Research has shown that your feelings about the kind of rapport that the counselor creates, much more than credentials and technical expertise, is the major factor in successful outcome in counseling.
  2. Ask questions. Persons who call to set up an office visit, use the telephone to ask me questions. As more providers become connected to the web, consumers will have a chance to get even more information about treatment approach. The following list of questions are entirely appropriate to ask before setting up an appointment.
    • Years in practice
    • Experience dealing with the kind of problems that lead you to seek help
    • Particular areas of expertise
    • Fees
    • Participation in managed care programs
  3. Do not let discouragement prevent you from finding a counselor. Studies have shown that even if you do not “click” with one counselor, this does not mean you cannot benefit for talking with a helping professional. Keep trying until you find someone you feel understands you.

If you are still not sure what to do, call me at 301.587.6205 or email me. The hardest step is often the first.