Choosing the best psychiatrist for you can be a trial and error process, and it may take you a little while before you find the best psychiatrist for you. While you’re looking for the best psychiatrist, keep these 10 warning signs in mind.
1. Your psychiatrist doesn’t have the proper training and education to help you with your issues.
The proper education and training are required to treat mental illness. If your psychiatrist isn’t educated or trained in areas in which you need help, he/she is not going to be able to offer effective therapy.
2. Your psychiatrist blames the people in your life.
Playing the blame-game doesn’t get anyone anywhere. Psychiatrists are to always be professional and help you get to the root of your issues and help you find solutions.
3. Your psychiatrist initiates touching without your consent.
Touching is not acceptable especially without your consent. If your psychiatrist should ever want to hug you, particularly after a draining session, he/she must ask beforehand and honor your wishes.
4. Your psychiatrist talks excessively about him/herself without any therapeutic purpose.
You’re seeing a psychiatrist because you need mental health support. You’re not there to listen about his/her personal life or anything else if it doesn’t aid in your therapy.
5. Your psychiatrist discloses your information without your authorization or consent.
This should never, ever be done and must be reported if it is. Disclosing your personal information without your consent is in direct violation of the law.
6. Your psychiatrist acts as if he/she has the answers to your issues and spends time telling you how to fix them.
While your psychiatrist is intelligent, no one has all the answers. A good psychiatrist works with you to come up with potential solutions to your issues and a plan to maintain those answers.
7. Your psychiatrist is cold and has no empathy.
Having empathy is a large part of psychiatry. A good psychiatrist will be able to feel for you and identify with what you’re going through.
8. Your psychiatrist constantly misses, cancels, or shows up late to your appointments.
This is unacceptable and should not be tolerated. Consistently missing appointments or showing up late creates the appearance that the psychiatrist isn’t interested in helping his/her patients.
9. Your psychiatrist doesn’t talk at all.
Psychiatry is about creating a dialogue with patients. Not talking to patients during sessions can send the message that that patient is being ignored.
10. Your psychiatrist talks too much.
It’s important for your psychiatrist to talk to you but not so much that you can’t get a word in edgewise. An even exchange must take place in order for therapy to be effective.
Dr. Amanda Itzkoff