Finding A Therapist Of Color: Tips From A Black Mental Health Practitioner
You’ve decided to seek therapy, and you’re ready to begin the search for a black therapist who can help you get your life back on track. The first step is finding a therapist who works with clients of color. But even if you do find someone, how do you know whether or not they will be able to relate to your experiences? I understand that feeling, which is why I want to share some strategies for finding a therapist of color:
So, you’ve finally decided to seek therapy.
If you are considering therapy for the first time, you may be feeling a bit nervous. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Your therapist is not a judge or jury. They are there to help you work through any issues that are causing distress in your life, not determine what kind of person you are based on their judgments of your past experiences and behaviors.
- You deserve mental health care just like anyone else does – no matter what privileges (or lack thereof) you may have had as an individual or as part of a marginalized group.
- Therapy isn’t about being “fixed”; it’s about learning how to cope with difficult feelings so that they don’t overwhelm your life and make it difficult for you to function in healthy ways
Finding the right therapist can be challenging enough—you want someone who is a good fit for your needs, and finding that perfect match involves a lot of trial and error.
Asking for a therapist of color
Finding the right therapist can be challenging enough—you want someone who is a good fit for your needs, and finding that perfect match involves a lot of trial and error. But when you’re also looking for someone who understands your experience as an African American or Caribbean American (or any other race or ethnic identity), it becomes even harder to find the right fit.
Finding a Therapist Who Shares Your Culture
The first step in finding the right therapist is figuring out what kind of person you need: Do you want someone who is culturally competent? Someone who shares your culture themselves? Or both?
Once you narrow down your search, it’s time to give prospective therapists a call.
Once you’ve narrowed down your search, it’s time to give prospective therapists a call. Just as with any other medical professional, you should be prepared with questions before setting up an appointment.
Here are some things to consider:
- How do they sound? Does their voice make you feel relaxed or tense? Do they seem like someone who would be able to relate to your experiences and needs?
- Do they practice in-person therapy or over the phone only? What works for one person might not work for another. Some people prefer face-to-face sessions because of social anxiety or body language difficulties; some prefer online sessions because of scheduling difficulties (such as being unemployed). You know yourself best!
Seeking therapy can be intimidating as it is, so don’t get discouraged if finding a therapist of color feels like a struggle.
You might be feeling discouraged or even defeated in your search for a therapist of color, but don’t give up. Therapy can be intimidating as it is, so don’t get discouraged if finding a therapist of color feels like a struggle. Asking for referrals from other therapists who are also people of color may help you get connected with someone more quickly than searching on your own (and it also gives you someone to talk to about the process).
If all else fails, remember that there are resources out there—both online and offline—that can help you find just the right person for your needs and preferences. You might need some specialized support that only someone who looks like you could provide, so don’t let yourself give up until you do everything within reason to try!
At Revive Therapeutic Services, you can find relief in knowing that we are all trained in understanding the impact of cultural issues when working with clients of all backgrounds!
At Revive Therapeutic Services, you can find relief in knowing that we are all trained to understand the impact of cultural issues when working with clients of all backgrounds! We are a culturally diverse mental health practice and our therapists are trained to work with all populations. We have therapists of color in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
There are many strategies you can use to find the right therapist for you
- Check with your insurance company. Usually, insurance companies list the names of licensed therapists in your area who are covered by your plan. If you’re not sure which types of therapy are covered by your plan, ask someone from the customer service department or check out their website.
- Look for therapists in your area. There are lots of online directories that can help you find a therapist near you (e.g., Psychology Today). You can also look through popular magazines and newspapers to see if they have lists of recommended therapists in certain areas; some local newspapers even run articles about local therapy practices or specializations that might appeal to certain demographics (such as LGBTQIA+ issues).
- Ask family and friends for recommendations: Your loved ones might be able to recommend someone they’ve seen personally who really helped them work through their struggles—and chances are good that if it worked well for them, it could work well for you too!
Finding the right therapist can be quite challenging. While colorblindness may not be the best approach, it can help you avoid making a decision based solely on race. If you do happen to find someone who is a good fit, then they will likely have the experience and knowledge necessary to help you through your journey of recovery. We have therapists of color in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.