Not Seeking Therapy: Top Five Excuses

  1. I should be able to do it on my own. This is such a hurdle in the myth of our individualistic, self-reliant culture. The idea of seeking help is so fraught with stigma. But there comes a time when your friends are politely avoiding certain conversations, and your family’s advice just makes you angry. Interested strangers are hard to come by.
  2. I can’t afford it. There are places with sliding-fee scales. In Pasadena, even.
  3. Therapy is for crazy people. This is another tough one. People are not just worried about what other people think, for some the very idea of starting psychotherapy shakes their ideas about their own sanity. The reality is that therapy often helps to make one feel more sane.
  4. It’s not going to change anything. A partial truth. Therapy may not change your current situation, the stressful things in your life, your dilemmas, will probably still be there. But with diligent work your reaction to them may change considerably.
  5. I don’t want someone interfering with my decision-making. Some therapists give advice. A psychodynamic therapist generally won’t. The idea is that people feel better about themselves when they understand their own minds and make their own decisions. Make sense?

Kalea Chapman, Psy.D.

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