Survey Reveals 85% of Therapists Advocate Being a Psychotherapy Client as a State Licensure Require The poll questioned emerging ideas about the importance of having experience “on the other side” of therapy before and during professional mental health care work.
BigNews.Biz - Aug 25,2009 - Anchorage, (GoodTherapy) Aug-25-2009 – Goodtherapy.org is an international directory of around 5000 therapists operating online for around 2 years now. In a recent survey conducted through an email questionnaire sent to around 4350 therapist members, it was asked if respondents favor state licensing programs that require professionals to participate in psychotherapy as clients. A significantly high 85% of respondents replied that they would in fact support such measures, and several of them expressed their desire to help facilitate and promote an initiative to convince state licensing authorities to adopt the idea. On the other hand, 11% respondents did not approve of this and answered negative, while 3.9% gave a vague response choosing ‘it depends’.
“Although the survey was not very scientific with only a 13% response rate, it was an effort to evaluate the scope of this positive change in state licensure requirements”, stated LMFT Noah Rubinstein who is the Executive Director at GoodTherapy.org. “One of the basic and much-lauded principles of healthy psychotherapy, the idea that therapy for mental health care professionals should be available, encouraged, and used may be fairly new on the scene, but it can quickly become de rigueur as a growing number of professionals show their support”.
Following the announcement of the survey's results, the site has played host to a lengthy discussion of the issue, in which the majority of readers warmly welcomed the idea and expressed their interest in helping bring the issue to a wider audience. Some joining the discussion have added their own twists on the possibilities of requiring that licensed therapists, counselors, and other mental health professionals receive their own therapy, including ideas about making the requirement a part of post-graduate training, and developing a widespread encouragement program rather than a strict licensing prerequisite.
In the coming months, new developments in this initiative are sure to arise as more professionals consider the benefits –both for therapists and their clients-- of the proposed requirement and bring their own thoughts and resources to the project. It is worth noting here that GoodTherapy.org is a strong advocate of non-pathologizing psychotherapy and all members have to agree with this stance before they are granted membership. So this bias might have skewed the results slightly and there’s clearly room for more surveys on a broader scale.
Created in 2007 by Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Noah Rubinstein and supported by a network of therapists who all provide collaborative and non-pathologizing therapy, GoodTherapy.org is an online hub for clients, therapists, and anyone interested in positive, effective, and meaningful mental health care. The site has recently achieved a monthly yield of over 120,000 unique visitors.