I’m a strong advocate of therapists only being able to provide therapy to others if they have been in therapy themselves. Therapy, therapy, therapy…
Here are a few of the reasons why:
- We, as therapists, need to know what it feels like (physically and emotionally) to be “on the other side” of the couch.
- If I, a therapist, haven’t processed my own struggles, how can I genuinely trust that therapy actually works? Practice what you preach.
- Countertransference is inevitable, but processing what comes up in clients’ sessions with our own therapist is vital. (I don’t mean that you share your clients’ confidential information, but the internal reactions that arise, both positive and negative)
- We learn skills and techniques from our own therapist that we haven’t learned in school.
- Just because we’re therapists doesn’t mean we can treat ourselves. We’re still human, and the sooner you (and your clients know that), the better you’ll be at what you do.
With that said, I’ll take this time to share my utmost gratitude to my own therapist for helping me continuously grow both personally and professionally.