Top questions to ask a new therapist or counselor in Alpharetta

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It's the middle of the night and you've decided what you're doing to cope with feeling overwhelmed and anxious isn't working. You know it's time to find a therapist or counselor in Alpharetta and you've taken steps to look for possible therapists in your area, now what?

If you’ve found a couple of therapists you’re considering, here are some questions to ask to help you narrow it down.

Specialty

  • Does the therapist or counselor specialize in your concern or challenge? All therapists and counselors have had basic training in a broad range of mental health issues, but like most professions, one may have more training or interest in an area more than others. What if you have significant anxiety about cancer recurrence when you go for your annual oncologist appointment? Or maybe you’re stressed and overwhelmed because you’re part of the sandwich generation caring for an aging parent while you’re still driving your kids everywhere. Would it be helpful to work with someone who gets it?

  • Sharing your situation with a potential therapist or counselor can help you both decide if it’s a good fit.

Location

  • Where is the office? Is it in Alpharetta close to work or home? Or is it further away in Norcross, Brookhaven, Cumming, or Atlanta?

Availability

  • What appointment times are available?  Do you need mornings or early afternoon before the kids get home from school, or do you need a lunchtime or after work appointment?

Frequency

  • How often does the therapist typically see people and for how long? Weekly therapy often helps clients and therapists connect more quickly and get down to work so you can feel better sooner and not be in therapy forever. Spacing out sessions every 2-4 weeks might work better for your time and budget, but sessions become more of a check in to catch up, rather than working on the deeper issues that are keeping you from feeling better. People who see a therapist sporadically are often in therapy longer than people who invest in weekly sessions.

Finances

  • Therapy is an investment. Are you able to self-pay or do you need someone who takes your insurance? Would you consider using out of network benefits for the right person? Think about how much you are willing and able to invest in yourself each week and for what period of time to feel better.

Prioritize

  • How much will you stretch for the right fit? Is it worth the money and distance to invest in yourself and have a therapist who “gets it” and has helped others with similar issues?

Therapists and counselors want to help you find the right person for you.  Don't be afraid to ask questions and consider multiple options.  This is an investment in yourself and finding the right person is important.  If you need more support, feel free to call me at 678-827-2111 for a free 15 minute consultation.  I’d be happy to listen, answer your questions and help you find the right person.  If you are looking for someone to help you with anxiety, cancer, chronic illness or caregiving, you can read more about me on my website, www.karenwhiteheadcounseling.com.

 

 

 

Karen Whitehead, MS. LCSW

Karen Whitehead, MS, LCSW specializes in helping overwhelmed and anxious adults and caregivers with stress, cancer or chronic illness reduce anxiety, sleep better, and enjoy life. Serving Alpharetta, Johns Creek, Cumming, Dunwoody and greater Atlanta.