Mental illness affects one in five Australians. This means that most of us know someone who lives with a mental health condition. Maybe it’s your best friend, or a co-worker, or perhaps even a parent. Whoever it is, knowing how to help them can be tough. While your love and support are super important, helping your loved one find a psychologist is a great way to ensure they get the care they need.
When it comes to therapy, the effects can literally be life-changing. However, many people stop themselves from seeking this help. This is often because they are afraid, lack the motivation or simply don’t know where to look. This is why it can be a great idea to find a therapist suited to your friend’s needs, so the daunting part is done for them.
So, how do you know if your loved one could benefit from therapy? And if they would, how do you go about finding them a psychologist? Here’s our simple guide to finding your friend or family member a great psychologist who will work for them.
How to tell if your loved one needs therapy
A lot of people think that you should wait until you’ve hit ‘rock-bottom’ before getting help. This isn’t true, and it’s not helpful for your friend to put off getting therapy. The sooner they stop digging down towards rock bottom, the less they have to climb back up again! This is why encouraging them to go to therapy sooner rather than later is the best way to support them.
There are a few key ways you can identify whether your loved one may need professional help. This includes:
- No longer finding joy in activities or things they used to love.
- Withdrawing from social events.
- Finding it difficult to go to school or work or maintain personal responsibilities.
- Increasing their use of substances, such as alcohol or drugs.
- If they have recently experienced a loss i.e. the death of someone close to them or relationship break-up.
- A tendency to isolate themselves from others.
- Signs that they are self-harming.
Finding the right psychologist for your loved one
After realising your friend could benefit from therapy, you might be wondering how to find a psychologist for them. The good news is that our free online service makes this process easier than ever. It allows you to find a great psychologist who can help your loved one. With the name and contact details of a professional, you can talk to them about making an appointment.
Using our online service is super easy. All you have to do is tell us a bit of information about your loved one. This includes a brief description of what they’re going through and why you’re worried about them. Other important details include their location and how much you think they could afford to pay to see a psychologist. This ensures we can find an affordable professional near them.
Using this information, our service provides you with two options…
Our team can match your friend with a psychologist
Don’t have the time or simply don’t feel confident picking a psychologist yourself? Our team can do it for you. Using the information you provide, we can find a professional who suits what your friend needs. Just give us a few days and we’ll contact you with some information on the professionals we’ve matched you or your friend with. It’s that simple!
Find a psychologist from our network of professionals
This second option is more hands-on. Once you’ve provided some information about your friend, we will show you a broad list of professionals that might be good for them. You can learn more about each psychologist, their experience and their therapy style by looking at their profile. After you’ve found one (or more) you like the sound of, you are free to schedule a phone call with them. This allows you to learn more about them and get a feel for whether they are right for your loved one.
Here are a few tips on how to approach speaking with a psychologist:
- Don’t provide any name or contact details for your friend. The psychologist can answer your questions without this information.
- Focus on telling the professional key issues your friend is dealing with. For example, “my friend needs help with anxiety and relationship problems”. Try to avoid sharing specific experiences your friend has had.
- Use the time to ask the psychologist questions. Some good things to ask are “how do you help people with anxiety?” or “have you helped many people with relationships issues?”
- Throughout your conversation with a psychologist, it’s important to remember that your goal is to find out whether they are right for your friend. You should avoid relaying their story or experiences, as it will be important for the professional to hear this from your friend first.
After you’ve found a psychologist suited to your friend’s needs, it’s time to get your friend on board. We’ve written a blog dedicated to helping you talk to a loved one about taking the crucial step of booking a therapy session. Head on over to that page to learn about this next step!