A therapist meeting face-to-face with a client is how film and TV often portrays psychotherapy. But in today’s world, telephone and video communication offer another option to the traditional in-person therapy. Long distance psychotherapy gives clients convenient access to quality care. This option is very useful to the many people who do not have a therapist available nearby, such as expats abroad, or those in rural areas. Children and careers may make it difficult to fit office visits into busy schedules, while others have to navigate limiting transportation issues.
Long used on helplines for suicide, drugs, and troubled youth, long distance counseling has expanded to include many other focus groups. Utilizing modern telephone and video technologies, long- and short-term therapy is available to people anywhere in the world, such as a village in Northern Alaska or a town in Japan.
Long distance psychotherapy serves the same population as in-person psychotherapy. Long distance therapists work with people who may be sad, or stressed, or in the process of ending a relationship – in fact, the whole gamut of the human condition. A therapist often works on improving communication skills and self-worth. Each therapist has their own approach and technique. What most therapist have is their compassion, empathy and active listening in common. Active listening means not just hearing a speaker’s words but picking up on the emotions and meanings beyond these words. The therapist can help you to resolve old family issues, improve communication skills, deepen personal insights and alternatives, and improve coping skills. The therapy itself is based on personal goals and individuality.
What To Expect
Usually appointments are set up by way of email. Through search engines such as Google, you can find the names of therapists as well as directories that list phone and Skype therapists. Many therapists offer free 15 minute consultations for their first session with a client. It is best to find someone who inspires confidence and with whom you feel comfortable. Getting in touch with several therapists is often the best way to find the right fit. Most appointments are 45 minutes to one hour long. Appointments are made in advance, usually weekly, though they can be biweekly or even monthly. Payment is usually through PayPal, but checks or E-Transfer payments are also possible depending on the arrangement which you and your therapist agree on. Video counseling is often done through Skype, but any website offering video-calling like Google Hangouts or Facetime can be used.
Please follow these links to learn more about long-distance psychotherapy:
- When Your Therapist Is Only a Click Away – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/25/fashion/therapists-are-seeing-patients-online.html?_r=1
- Distance Counseling Effectiveness Research – http://www.fca-andover.com/effectiveness-studies–distance-counseling.html
- Internet-based CBT for Anxiety and Depression – http://www.medicographia.com/2013/01/internet-based-cognitive-behavior-therapy-for-anxiety-and-depression/
For further questions or information, please contact one of our many therapists on the Alternative Therapists Directory who offer Phone & Skype Psychotherapy.