For those who aren’t familiar with therapy firsthand, media platforms like television shows and movies are usually where people can get an insight into how therapy works. Of course, just like anything television and movies might portray a sliver of what real life is like, however, it’s not always the way things actually are. Just because art is imitating life doesn’t mean it’s a correct imitation. Because of these fictitious portrayals, many people are scared or turned off by the idea of therapy. So, let’s look at the top 4 misconceptions television and movies portray therapy.
Lie #1. Therapists Can’t be Trusted to Keep Your Secrets
This is completely false. Your therapist is ethically bound to keep what you say in each session confidential. The only exception to this rule is if you are threatening to harm yourself or others. You can rest assured that all of your sessions are kept private and a quality, ethical therapist will know to keep your information you share private.
Lie #2: Therapists are Off the Wall and Odd
In a lot of tv shows, therapists are portrayed as these kind of quirky, off-the-wall individuals. When in fact, real-life therapists are quite the opposite. They’re normal, everyday people who want to help you feel better about your life. Just like anyone else, they have interests and quirks. However, they’re not these totally off-the-wall people.
Lie #3: Therapists Will Fix All of Your Problems
This is one of the biggest misconceptions, whether you’ve seen therapy portrayed in film or television. A good therapist will help you find your own answers and solutions to your problems. They can only help guide you to the right solutions, they can’t fix it completely for you. Therapy is about 50/50 work. You have to be willing to put in the work to fix the problem.
Lie #4: Therapists are On-Call Crisis Managers
Yes, some therapists will give you access to a line that allows you to call or text them outside of a session. However, this doesn’t mean that they’re on-call 24/7 to help you. In a lot of tv shows and films, it appears that you can reach out to your therapist whenever. While this may be possible, this doesn’t mean that they’re required to answer or help you immediately at that moment. If it is a serious emergency, they will recommend you call the hospital.
There are a lot of different correct and very wrong portrayals of therapy in the media. Fortunately, now you’re aware of some common misconceptions. Being aware of these misconceptions prior to coming into therapy can help you really make the most out of each session. If you’re thinking about seeing a counselor or a therapist but are worried about some portrayals you’ve seen in the media, give us a call. Our team of highly trained and skilled, compassionate counselors can help you get your life back on track and get your confidence back. Schedule an appointment today.