I truly believe we should view therapy and healing the same way we view exercise...rather than it being something to do when you need help, going to therapy regularly can help you learn how to thrive rather than just survive. There are many resources available, but the challenge is that unless you're a therapist, you may not know of what resources are available to you. Here are a few options of where and how to look for services on a budget:
1. Contact local or state universities with graduate programs in psychology. Many universities have programs at low cost (or sometimes no cost) due to working with therapists who need a certain number of hours to graduate. You can also ask them if they know of any non-profits or clinics who see people on sliding scales.
2. Insurance. Contact your insurance to find a list of therapists who take your insurance. This will be much easier than trying to find a therapist on your own who takes your insurance, as there are lots of regulations to navigate.
3. Group Therapy. If you have connected with a therapist whom you like but is out of your budget, find out if they run any groups. Group therapy is a much cheaper option than individual while still allowing for processing as well as offering community, which is also an essential part of a well balanced life.
4. Google Low Cost Therapy in your city or state. Thankfully, because of the pandemic, many centers offer telehealth, which allows for therapists to see clients who may not reside in the same city (due to regulations, both parties need to reside in the same state). Many clinics have wait lists; go ahead and get on them, even if it seems far off. You can also ask them if they know of other clinics or resources which may be able to help you.
5. 12-Step Meetings. 12-Step programs aren't just for recovering alcoholics. There are support groups for people struggling with eating disorders (EDA, ABA, &OA), codependency (CODA & AL-ANON), financial struggles (DA & UA), relationship problems (SLAA & SAA), adult children of alcoholics or dysfunctional families (ACOA &ACA). Many of these programs have both online and phone meetings, and are available internationally.