How do I trust a therapist again?

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Q: Hi , I was in therapy with the same therapist for 2yrs. I suffer from bi-polar and had to formed a relationship of trust with her. I started on a sliding scale which i was very greatful for but a month ago my therapist all of a sudden decided to raise my rate by almost 50% by the following week. I can’t afford to pay that much so she avdised me to seek therapy at a free clinic. I was totally devastated. How could I trust another therapist ?
I even called and left a voice mail telling her that this has left me hurt and unable to trust again but she never got back to me again.

A: This is most unusual and unprofessional behavior for a therapist. All I can suggest to you is that you remember that therapists are people too. It could be that she is in some crisis of her own that has so overwhelmed her that she isn’t managing her relationships with clients as she should. This doesn’t excuse the behavior. It is only a speculation on what would cause a therapist who has treated someone for two years to be so apparently uncaring.

Has this therapist helped you in your time together? If so, it would be more useful for you to focus on the good help you’ve received than on the way the relationship ended. Nothing, even an awkward ending, can take away whatever support, relief, and better self-understanding that occurred while you were in treatment with her. This can be the basis for trust in a new therapist. A positive learning experience with your former therapist has taught you that therapy can help. Please follow through and make that phone call to the local clinic so you can get back on track.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 14 Sep 2008

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2008). How do I trust a therapist again?. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 29, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/09/14/how-do-i-trust-a-therapist-again/

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