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Seeing a New Therapist or Psychiatrist

frayed ropeI am my own mental health advocate. If I don’t stand up for myself, who will? So, a month ago, before I even got to Nashville, I set up an appointment with both a therapist and a psychiatrist here.

I kept those appointments Wednesday and Thursday. I feel like this needs to be said because going to a new mental health professional can be scary and it is EASY, oh so easy, to just cancel and put it off for another time. I know this trick. I’ve tried it. It gets you nowhere.

Wednesday was stressful to say the least. The office is in downtown Nashville so there is a bit of hustle and bustle to the traffic. Then it took me an hour to locate the office. I went to a wrong building. I went to the right building and turned away from it. It was a mess, but I made it to my appointment in time. Thank goodness I gave myself so much extra time.

The therapist was an older gentleman, very mild-mannered. He offered me a cup of ice cold water. That helped. You see, I hate going to new therapists and psychiatrists. I feel like I’m vomiting my illness on them. There is so much to say and so much confusion between the two of us because I have moved so much and so many episodes have preceded our meeting it is hard for them to keep track of everything.

On Thursday I saw the psychiatrist, another older gentleman with a long gray ponytail. Interesting. He asked me a ton of questions – spent a good deal of time with me talking about my manic episodes and the throes of depression. We spoke briefly of my anxiety and OCD. I liked him a lot, actually. And though I am not sure I will continue to see the therapist (I just prefer a woman), I plan on keeping my appointment in 6 weeks with the doctor.

I lived. I sat through uncomfortable meetings and I made it. Sometimes I think the anxiety before the appointment is far worse than the actual appointment. So, if you are scared about making that first appointment, don’t be. They are professionals and will treat you as such. Yes, we all have our horror stories, but generally you are better off visiting a mental health worker than trying to deal with your struggles alone.



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Seeing a New Therapist or Psychiatrist

Elaina J. Martin

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APA Reference
Martin, E. (2015). Seeing a New Therapist or Psychiatrist. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 2, 2020, from


Last updated: 11 Sep 2015
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