A team led by mental health research professor Mike Crawford, from Imperial College London, surveyed 14,587 people who were receiving or had recently received therapy for depression or anxiety, and found that 5.2% felt they had suffered “lasting negative effects” as a direct result of your treatment. Therapy can be a truly transformative step for many people in terms of mental health and happiness, but it's not necessarily easy. As any expert will tell you, it's certainly not a quick fix and will probably require more than simply showing up for your 50-minute sessions to really get the desired benefits. For example, if you haven't found a therapist you trust and connect with, it's not uncommon for you to wonder if therapy can make things worse.
When someone undergoes psychotherapy, the hope, obviously, is that they will recover. But if they don't, what is the worst that can happen? What therapy will turn out to be ineffective? In fact, therapy can be harmful, and research shows that, on average, about 10 percent of patients worsen after starting therapy. In fact, it's normal to feel bad or worse from time to time after therapy, especially at the beginning of work with a therapist. It can be a sign of progress.
As contradictory as it may seem, feeling bad during therapy can be good. Sometimes it can be very uncomfortable, difficult or challenging. But you should never feel that the therapy is retraumatic and, of course, you should not feel that it is getting worse. In this episode, I'm covering all the ways therapy could make it worse and how to address them.
Therapists are meant to help people change their lives, but those who behave badly can end up doing more harm than good. The same is true if you are looking for a therapist who will help you be more reflective and really look a little deeper into yourself and not so much, let's say that it is strategy-oriented and focuses on rethinking and very specific tools. And the reason for that, among other things, is that if you have a trusting relationship with your therapist, you're most likely willing to bring things up and discuss things that you might not have allowed yourself to discuss in an emotionally safe environment. For example, sometimes the therapist may remind you of someone you don't like it or with whom you really had a lot of problems.
But before you do it, it might be worth taking a chance with your therapist and being open and honest about it. Because what research overwhelmingly demonstrates is that the relationship, that therapeutic relationship, that alliance that is built between you and your therapist is actually the most important factor contributing to positive outcomes in therapy. Kyle and Courtney have since had positive experiences with other therapists, but Courtney believes that Michael caused lasting damage to his mental health. If you feel that this is not a good option for you, the therapist may not be a good option from a personal or clinical point of view, or if you feel worse on a regular basis after therapy.
To become a member of BACP, therapists must pass a certificate of proficiency or take a BACP accredited course. And that's because, while they have reduced paper requirements, therapists are also as humane (and flawed) as anyone else. And when this happens, if the therapist doesn't realize it, you're often recreating things that happen or have happened in your life, that aren't really helpful. For example, much of the psychological research on the effectiveness of treatment has focused on short-term treatments, in which the therapists in the trial are told to follow a specific “manual” way of carrying out therapy.
Say, for example, that you are the client and you begin to have feelings of feeling nourished and feeling that your therapist is the sweet, kind, gentle father you never had, or mother, and that you would have liked. Like everyone else, therapists must make a living, so it is to be hoped that interest will influence the way they present themselves and their work. . .