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‘I Can’t Afford It’ And 6 Other Myths About Counseling

‘I Can’t Afford It’ And 6 Other Myths About Counseling

By: Blake Neuhauser, M.A. – Therapist

 

Have you ever thought to yourself “I wish I could try counseling, but I cannot afford it,” “If I enter counseling, my friends and family will think I am crazy,” or “The therapist won’t be able to understand because s/he has not gone through what I have gone through?”

These are common myths that can hinder a person from seeking the counseling he or she needs.

Myth 1: “I cannot afford counseling”
The financial responsibility of paying for counseling can be a fear that holds many people back from trying counseling. The reality is that there are several programs that can help assist individuals in paying for counseling. Many insurance companies will be able to help cover the cost of counseling. At Crosswinds, we have an income-based tiered system that can provide discounted prices for a limited number of sessions. This way more individuals can get the counseling they need including those who do not have insurance.

Myth 2: “People will think I am crazy if I am in counseling”
This is one of the most common misconceptions individuals have when they enter counseling. The reality is that everyone can benefit from counseling. Therapists see a wide variety of individuals and families in counseling sessions. Some may have severe traumas that require several sessions of hard work. Others may spend a few sessions working on processing a new life transition. The needs of the individual, family, or couple guide the session and can have a broad range of severity. Also, those who enter counseling show great courage in facing their problems.

Myth 3: “The therapist won’t be able to understand me because s/he has not gone through
what I have gone through”
The reality is that no two people react the same exact way to any given situation; however, the general emotional reaction to events is experienced relatively the same across all people. Therapists are equipped with the ability to understand and experience the intense emotions with their client. Therapists are also trained to be sensitive to different cultures, genders, sexual orientations, races, and religions.

Myth 4: “All the therapist is going to do is try to give me a pill”
There are instances where medication is highly effective when working with mental health symptoms. Research indicates that medication in conjunction with therapy has been proven to be the most effective approach to treating mental illness. Also, clients are in control over whether they would like to receive medication or not when working with their mental health.

Myth 5: “Therapy doesn’t really work”
The truth is that therapy does work. Therapy has been tested for years to see if it is effective. The results have been consistent: therapy works. Several studies show that when client’s come in with mental illness symptoms, they typically leave therapy with their symptoms levels being decreased. The question researchers are most concerned with today is not, “Does therapy work?” The question is, “What approaches in therapy work best?”

Myth 6: “The therapist will just try to fix my problems”
The bottom line is that the client is responsible for working on their problems. The therapist works alongside the client every step of the way encouraging and supporting the client. This means that the client is a big part of being in control of the session.

Resources

Bowers, W.A. (1990) Treatment of depressed inpatients. Cognitive therapy plus medication,
relaxation plus medication, and medication alone. The British Journal of Psychiatry
156 (1) 73-78
Myths and Facts about the Counseling experience. Upstate Medical University. Retrieved from
http://www.upstate.edu/currentstudents/support/scc/myths.php