When you look for a therapist, you must search for one who will work well with both the patient and with those who interact most closely with that patient. Consider the attitude of the therapist. Does he or she appreciate the degree to which bipolar disorder can impact a patient’s development and family life?
Does the therapist show a willingness to treat the patient with respect? Does the therapist make an effort to discover the values that shape the thinking of the patient who has sought some type of treatment? A well-qualified therapist can not deliver adequate care, if he or she lacks an adequate level of understanding.
Does the therapist appear ready to consider a range of different treatments? Not every patient with bipolar disorder responds to psychotherapy. Some patients need to take a prescribed medication. Does the therapist considered by those concerned for the patient demonstrate a willingness to agree to the possible use of medication?
Not every therapist is a physician. When a therapist lacks an M.D. degree, he or she has not been trained to weigh the benefits of any drug against the side effects associated with that drug. A therapist without an M.D. degree has not been authorized to prescribe medication. He or she has not been trained to monitor a patient’s response to any drug.
Sometimes, friends and or family want to get a second opinion after the initiation of a selected treatment. Does the therapist under consideration show a willingness to go along with a search for a second opinion? Does the therapist seem reluctant to acknowledge the advice of a trained specialist?
A therapist is privy to much personal information. Most skilled therapists are trustworthy. Yet one can not find any certificate the attests to the trustworthiness of those employed in the office of the therapist.
At a time when most information is stored in a computer, one needs to look carefully for any signs that a therapist’s employee might be ready to release to others a patient’s personal information. A patient with bipolar disorder wants to hold in confidence most of the information about his or her condition.
How can one measure the trustworthiness of office employees? Keep an ear peeled for any “slip of the tongue.” If someone working for a therapist has mentioned in passing personal information about another patient, then that employee could well divulge personal information about someone close to you, someone who you have guided to the therapist’s office.
Bearing that fact in mind, those who want to locate treatment for bipolar disorder must judge with care when choosing a therapist. They must look beyond the demeanor of the therapist. They must also look closely at the behavior of everyone who works in the office of that therapist.