I Need Therapy. How do I Find a Good Therapist?

Moriel Mcduffy
3 min readJul 7, 2021

By Dr. Moriel McDuffy

Finding a therapist that is right for you can be difficult. There are many therapists, including licensed social workers, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, licensed professional counselors of mental health, and some unlicensed but certified therapists. Searching for the right therapist can be confusing. Below I provided a few tips for finding a therapist that fits you.

Experience Matters

When searching for a therapist, you may see credentials you do not understand (.i.e. Ph.D., LCSW, LPCMH). A quick google search will reveal the license, and if that does not help, you can always ask the provider. More than the license, I suggest reading up on the therapist’s experience to understand if they have worked with your population. For example, if you’re seeking family therapy for a 13-year-old’s behavior issues, you want to know that the therapist has worked with teens with behavior issues before. Do not assume that any therapist can work with every behavioral health issue. There are many disciplines and areas of expertise, so make sure the therapist you choose has relevant experience. Ask providers how they work and what techniques they use. This matters because there are a lot of therapeutic techniques. Some techniques have been proven effective in the research. You should understand what techniques they will use and if you feel comfortable with the way they work. Ask specific questions and do your own research. Ask clarifying questions until you understand. If a therapist cannot explain these things until you understand, they may not be the one for you.

Cultural Competence

Many people want therapists who can relate to them. Thus, some look for similar cultural backgrounds, a certain age, similar life experiences, or other similarities. The therapeutic process works best when the client is comfortable and bought into the process. For example, if you feel most comfortable with an Asian American therapist, then search for an Asian Therapist. However, some populations struggle to find therapists of their choosing. In these cases, ask direct questions about the therapist’s experience working with your population. If you are comfortable with the answers, then try it. I suggest writing what you want in a…

Moriel Mcduffy

Dr. Moriel McDuffy has has a Ph.D. in Psychology. He has over 25 years of experience working with communities, and educating at multiple Universities.