so here it is after 3 years of being on-time for my appointments and 75-80% of time watching my therapist/msw show-up 10-30 minutes late i had enough. if you’re paying for someone else it is their job to be on-time period. if they are not here are some steps to change provider or fire your therapist.
however, this also depends on how many medications you’re on and when was the last time you were in the hospital. if you’re taking more than 2 medications per-day and was hospitalized within the last 12 months i would NOT recommend that you seek counseling elsewhere. being stable and functioning is very important if you’re refusing treatment they may force you back in the hospital.
if you’re out this zone of treatment however and your medications have been tapered off and you’re functioning well and managing your stress you have the right as patient to seek treatment elsewhere. here are the signs of a unprofessional therapist.this has happened to me in the last 3 years and this behavior is unacceptable.
—they routinely show up late for your appointments-Always with a excuse in tow. when you address their lack of professionalism with their boss they emotionally blackmail you by telling you have to stay within the practice because of the medication you’re taking or the shrink that’s prescribing them.
—the therapist/msw threaten your government benefits or try to tell you have to stay within the practice because you only qualify because of one component. this is false and unprofessional-they should be reported to their bosses immediately
—this how a BAD session looks: they show-up anywhere between 15-30 minutes, after you’re led into their office rather than putting away their belongings they fidget instead of listening. fidgeting can include anything from doing their nails with nail polish, they can’t retrieve your file or they don’t have it ready. they’re NOT taking notes about what you’re saying(most people who come into therapy usually speak about their main issues within the first 20 minutes of a session.) here some basic things they should NOT be doing: fishing around their drawers for ANYTHING. if they have a headache they should take their Aleve or Tylenol between sessions NOT during them this includes allergy medication, nasal sprays anything that takes their focus off you.
a) the fidgeting described above lasts 15 minutes and there are no notes taken or very poor eye contact with you the patient. when they finally settle down it’s the last 15-20 minutes of the session and you feel that NOW you can tell them your main emotionally trigger you may have had. DON’T because at this point you will be cut off and will not have a proper resolution to your problem which can cause the rest of your day to be off kilter.
—when they come late for sessions and constantly try to give you a new verbal contract-keep in mind this to give you the impression that they care but a unprofessional therapist/msw won’t honor what they are telling you. if start telling you that they promise their behavior will change don’t believe it.
—some therapists believe that their patients are sicker then they are: here’s magical feather trick. they treat you as a child and tell you that you should carry around a laminated piece of paper with their numbers on it and your family member, including your date of birth. okay-first of all this piece of paper does you the patient nothing. if the police are called because you are actually spiraling it means you’ll end up the hospital no matter what. the first thing police look for is your license or state id. hence, the magical feather does nothing.
—here’s another heads up: your therapist/msw has come late to session BUT refuses to honor the requirement of your 50-55 minute session by showing agitation towards you the patient when you have only shared 4 sentences in 20 minutes and the time is crawling up to their next appointment and they cut you off; this is not professional. when they honor being on-time for the patient after you BUT not you it’s time for you to fire them.
—here’s another example of when to stop seeing someone; say you have places, people or things that make you uncomfortable and sometimes can cause you to stressed and you want to vent about this issue in order to function the remainder of the day and this happens time to give them the boot. in the span of the phone call no matter how long/short it is that ACTUALLY upset you more rather than giving you create ways to cope with your stress. if after hanging up with your therapist/msw you have to call a family member or your boyfriend to calm down it’s time to send them packing.
remember your mental health is just as important as your physical health and if your needs are not being met it’s time to go shopping for someone new. you as the patient needs to be treated as the most important person in that 55 minutes if however you feel that issues are not being resolved after 10 sessions or less go shopping.
I am a 44 year old writer and poet that just published my first collection of poetry called Greylight. I live by 3 simple rules everyday, live, laugh, love. I currently live in Norway with my husband and our dog. I adore people watching and seeing how others see the city I now live in. I hope you enjoy reading and if you ever have any feedback all is welcome.