The first 2 parts of the Young Professionals Series have focused on positives associated with seeing a young therapist and being a young therapist. However, this 3rd posts focuses on some special considerations clients should be mindful of if they decide to see a young professional.
Things to be mindful of:
1. Young professionals typically have less experience. If someone is young, even a therapist, they have had less years to be in the field to acquire experience and less years of living to gain life experience. With that said, it doesn’t mean that a young therapist is inexperienced. By the time someone receives their master’s degree in counseling, they have already accrued at least 1000 hours of experience in the field.
2. A young therapist may have a tendency to either be either too soft or too firm on a client initially. It is easy for a young therapist to be afraid of hurting/breaking you by being too firm but it is also easy for them to be afraid clients won’t respect them and the therapy process if they are too soft.
3. A young therapist may need to consult with their supervisor about the appropriate course of action to take rather than being able to take immediate action. This is not a bad thing, it’s just something to be aware of.
4. You need to be aware that if the therapist is significantly younger than you, they may remind you of one of your children. This is not a bad thing and it actually has a name-transference. This can be a useful opportunity to work through issues with your children, it just feels uncomfortable initially.