What you can do to help...

Posted: Sep 29, 2015 in September 2015

Dr. Judith Beck recently addressed this very common question.  I receive a number of phone calls and emails from concerned friends/spouses/family members.  Here are some of her suggestions if you find yourself in this situation:


  1. Consider the effectiveness of the intervention.  Some people conjure up an image of lying on a couch and dissecting their childhood in excruciating detail when they think about Psychotherapy.  Indeed, Psychotherapeutic interventions have changed a great deal since Freudian times.  More current approaches are present focused with a problem solving emphasis.  In addition, some approaches (such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) are evidence based and have a large body of literature supporting their efficacy for a number of diagnoses.


  1. Therapy doesn’t have to be a major commitment.  Your friend/loved one/family member can always try a few sessions before deciding if their therapist is a good fit for them.


  1. Consider therapy as an experiment.  What is the hypothesis about what will transpire? Use the opportunity to measure the evidence in support of your loved one/family member/friend’s hypothesis(es) against evidence to the contrary.


  1. Encourage your family member/friend/loved one to express their concerns to their therapist.  It is always helpful for me to understand my patient/client’s concerns and doubts so we can decide together if the treatment is the right fit.


  1. Therapy is an investment.  Most communities offer low cost or sliding scale options if your loved one/family member/friend doesn’t have access to insurance.