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When I Didn't 'Mesh' With My New Therapist

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My previous therapist and I were completely wrong for each other. Our personalities, goals for therapy and understanding of each other didn’t mesh at all. I needed a more personable therapist who remembered my name and diagnosis every time we would meet. What I got from this therapist was the complete opposite, and through every session, my needs weren’t being met.

After five sessions of unmet goals and unanswered questions, I knew therapy with this particular therapist wasn’t going to work out. I took a series of steps to bow out of therapy while trying not to give up on it altogether.

First, I made a list of the pros and cons of going to therapy. There were easily more pros than cons, and I was reminded that therapy is essential to my treatment and recovery. I made this list because after several failed attempts at finding the right therapist, I was discouraged. I thought maybe something was wrong with me, or that my expectations were too high. But it was just that I hadn’t found the right therapist, so I continued searching.

After making my pro/con list and being reminded off the importance of therapy, I decided to write my therapist a kind but educational letter that I would read to her at our last session. The letter included why I didn’t want to be seen anymore, and why we didn’t “mesh.” Writing this letter was therapeutic in itself because I calmly let go of my frustration while offering my therapist an explanation at the same time.

After reading her my letter during our last session, and after our time together concluded, I got in touch with my insurance company. They provided me with a list of therapists in my insurance network. I took a look at the list and then researched reviews on each therapist. I called the therapists with positive reviews and the best availability, and I finally made an appointment with a new therapist.

To prepare for seeing my new therapist, I made a list of goals I would show her during our first session. This way, my new therapist would know my needs up front, and we could decide from there if we were a good fit.

The process of finding a therapist you “mesh” with can be hard and discouraging. But I didn’t give up on therapy, and neither should you. Even if it takes 100 intake appointments with 100 different therapists, do not give up. Don’t give up because therapy can be important for treatment and recovery, and it can be essential for maintaining stable mental health.

Say a graceful goodbye to the therapist you don’t “mesh” with, and continue the search for the therapist you fit well with.

Image via Thinkstock Images

Originally published: July 24, 2016
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