Applicants' Experience of the Process of Seeking Therapy
American Psychological Association
Assessed the process of seeking psychotherapy, conceptualized as 4 steps: recognizing the problem; deciding therapy might help; deciding to seek therapy; and contacting the mental health system. A process of seeking therapy questionnaire was completed by 275 adult therapy applicants. It ascertained problem duration, alternative coping strategies, difficulty achieving and time needed to achieve the steps, and whether the S had informal help achieving the steps. Results indicated that problems tended to be long-standing; Ss attempted a variety of coping strategies before seeking therapy; and informal help was important throughout the process. Problem recognition was the most difficult, time-consuming step. The least and most distressed Ss reported the most difficulty achieving the first 3 steps.