WHO IS NOT RIGHT FOR ONLINE COUNSELING?
Many find online counseling comforting especially if he or she struggles with meeting people or wants to work through difficult subject matters from a distance. So I want to go over who might not be a good candidate for these types of services.
~Can you keep yourself safe? Clients who have suicidal thoughts or tendencies would not do well. The therapist would be unable to properly assess and monitor your well-being. Our main priority is knowing that you are stable and able to utilize appropriate coping skills in all areas of your life. There are clear signs that MaryEllen will be able to see in an Office setting that may not be able to notice Online.
~Have you been diagnosed with a personality disorder or other serious mental illness? A person with a personality disorder has developed many maladaptive behaviors that can appear like a constant roller coaster to others. Their difficulties in personal relationships or in functioning in society, will create a problem in building rapport with the therapist even in an Office setting. Often times, the person will require a heavy-handed therapeutic approach if they are to see progress towards their goals. This just simply cannot work effectively through online services. Someone with a serious mental illness may require hospitalization and benefit from in Office therapy only where all of their needs can be assessed closely.
~Do you feel or think about physically harming another person? As you can imagine, a person with these thoughts is a challenge to help or assist from a distance. A person's impulse controls may not be strong enough to guarantee their safety or the safety of another person.
~Not Technology savvy? Online therapy can be disrupted if equipment does not function well, internet service is too slow, telephone connections are unreliable, and the person does not know how to manage their own equipment. It is important to assess your own limitations before you decide if Online Therapy will work for you. It is your responsibility to make sure you have what is needed for each session. It is likely that if a problem can't be resolved quickly that the appointment will have to be rescheduled. Even in the best of circumstances, technology can still be a factor and a session be rescheduled. We will help you overcome any obstacles if we can.
~Not A Good Communicator? Online Therapy requires an even stronger ability to state your thoughts clearly. You must be willing to tell your therapist when they are not getting the full message you are trying to convey, and if you are not understanding them as fully as you believe they are trying to speak. In an Office setting, body language and facial expressions clue people in when they are not on the same page. It is far easier to walk away from an Online Session with misunderstandings. Being a real attentive listener and asking clarifying questions will go a long way in making sure you are understood and that you have received feedback that you can use properly. Your therapist does not mind read, and you will have to give more in a session to ensure the most from your session.