How many times you may have come across twisted beliefs regarding psychotherapy. You wouldn’t have even known how to differentiate if it was a psychotherapy treatment myth or fact. Doesn’t that sound uncomfortable? For us, it is.
The myths about psychotherapy can cause significant hurdles for the ones who look forward to consulting a therapist. Other people may also mock them based on these myths, creating further obstacles.
Given the hesitation regarding psychotherapy that occurs as a result, we have decided to debunk them for once and for all. Therefore, in this article, we will mention the six most crucial myths of all time and debunk them with relevant facts and studies.
6 Psychotherapy Treatment Myths You Need to Forget Right Now
1. Therapy is for the Mentally Weak or Sick
The general thought about psychotherapy is that people who need to see a therapist are either weak or mentally ill. That is, undoubtedly, the biggest psychotherapy treatment myth of all time. If you tell someone you are taking therapy sessions; they instantly assume something is wrong with you. It is essential to educate these people that therapy is for everyone. However, before that, you need to educate yourself.
Throughout our life span, each one of us goes through different experiences. Some of these experiences are happy, while others can be traumatic. And we all have different ways to treat ourselves during these times. However, sometimes, it may get all messed up, and we find ourselves in the middle of that mess.
Psychotherapy can work as a decluttering or untangling exercise for anyone. A therapist does not interrogate or judge you. In therapy sessions, you and your counselor work together to find the best way for you to work on your problems. It is about cultivating a better ground for understanding your thoughts and emotions.
And once you know why you feel what you feel, it is easier to train yourself to make things better. Therefore, we know that psychotherapy is for anyone who needs to declutter their thoughts and grow as a person and to understand themselves better.
It is literally for everyone at any point in life.
2. Therapy is Only for When You Go Through a Great Trauma
Whenever we think about psychotherapy, what comes to the mind is trauma, some incident so significant that it leaves you shattered. Such beliefs have mostly raised by movies. The only time a character would seek therapy is when their life has fallen apart.
That is another psychotherapy treatment myth that keeps individuals from seeking therapeutic services as preventive care. They keep trying to hold onto themselves as if they need to prove how far they can go with their life problems.
However, this should never be the case. Psychotherapy can help a variety of issues different people face in their lives.
For some, it is about getting through trauma from a single incident, like the loss or death of a loved one. While for some others, it is about handling continuous trauma or depression. However, for many, psychotherapy is about learning to improve parenting skills, getting marriage counseling, or coping with troubles at a highly demanding job.
We cannot emphasize any harder over seeking psychotherapy as preventive care rather than waiting for a tragedy.
3. Your Psychotherapist Will Hypnotize You to Know Your Secrets
The idea of psychological counseling has been widely distorted by the movies we watch. Filmmakers use therapy as some magical discourse in which the character is put to transform. Hypnosis is the most twisted psychotherapy treatment.
That not only destroys the idea of psychotherapy but also of hypnosis.
People who need therapy should contact a psychotherapy center rather than believing such myths.
Hypnosis, in actual, is an aid in therapy used to help the patients explore their feelings that the conscious mind may not be aware of. According to the American Psychological Association, Guy H. Montgomery, a Ph.D. in Psychology, says there is no magic or mind control in hypnosis. He is a lead researcher for exploring hypnosis and pain management.
Certified hypnotherapists have debunked the psychotherapy treatment myth about hypnosis by explaining what really happens. They describe hypnosis as a trance-like state where the patients are awake. They participate and also remember everything that happens around them during the session.
Participants operate with their own minds. The hypnosis we see on TV is an entirely media-driven myth.
4. I Can Just Talk to a Friend and Feel Better
While talking to a close friend is quite soothing, it is not a substitute for psychotherapy. There are times when you need professional help, particularly to the issue at hand. Psychotherapists are specialized in specific areas like trauma, addiction, relationships, or childhood issues.
Therapists not only listen to you and give advice. They put years in studying and learning the human psyche and scientific ways to counter maladaptive behaviors.
Your psychotherapist will be objective and non-judgemental. They will challenge your thought process to help you form a healthy mindset.
With psychotherapy treatment, you will learn how to better manage your emotions and reduce the ones that affect your life negatively. You will also be able to break the toxic patterns that have been dominating your life events adversely.
There are different techniques to help you through the trauma and avoid the risks of developing mental illnesses. All these things are impossible to achieve by talking to a friend. The misconceptions about clinical psychology have their roots in movies and serials, where the therapists say a few wise words that change a person’s life.
This belief also takes its roots from the notion that there are no medicines involved like in psychiatric services. People like to believe in concrete things and feel better when they have a countable measure. However, one must understand that even though psychologists do not prescribe medications, their techniques are scientifically proven.
And the treatment works miracles for people who stay steadfast.
However, if you are still more comfortable with going to a psychiatrist, you can always consult them for psychotherapy.
5. My Therapist Will Know My Secrets, and I Will be at a Disadvantage
Another psychotherapy treatment myth is that telling your life’s problems to a therapist is risky. However, this is the most misguided belief one could have about psychotherapy.
The patient-therapist relationship is bound by the rules of confidentiality. Your psychotherapist can not disclose your information to anyone except where they are supposed to do so under the state’s law.
These situations are mostly when a child or patient is under danger, or if there is a risk of harm to other people. These laws vary from one state to another within the USA.
6. Psychotherapy Does Nothing, it is All About Your Will Power
Psychotherapy not only listens to your problems but helps you understand your emotions better. It provides scientifically proven procedures to break the vicious cycle of harmful and toxic patterns.
Will power is definitely a significant part of it as psychotherapy is not a passive treatment. The patient has to participate and actively work with the therapist to resolve their issues. Without having a firm conviction to improve yourself, all your efforts may go into vain.
However, just the same way, having will power without the right direction and techniques to reach the destination will also prove fruitless.
Therefore, one must understand that psychotherapy and will power must go hand-in-hand to achieve the results. Your therapist will also be glad to help you build the will power needed to reach your desired goals.
Any psychotherapy treatment myth can be debunked by doing proper research and reading authentic articles like this one to learn facts.
Psychotherapy is a powerful way to mend yourself and become a healthier individual with a positive mindset. You can consult a qualified psychiatric nursing practitioner for more information. Debunking the myths about psychotherapy is vital for you and for your loved ones who may be hesitant but in need of help.