I’m looking for counselors who don’t suck!

If you’ve been a counselor/psychologist/psychiatrist/clinician for a while I don’t have to tell you that most counselors suck. You’ve undoubtedly had to clean up their messes. We’ve all heard the horror stories about counselors who fell asleep during a session, or minimized someone’s issues, or made a flagrant and hasty diagnosis and threw pills at someone, or was condescending, or uninvolved, or didn’t have a clue what they are doing.

I hear from good people every day who are looking for a great counselor who is empathetic, intuitive, knowledgeable, involved, humble and experienced. If you are a counselor who has those qualifications let me know so I can refer to you.

Let’s start a healing army of therapists who “get it”. Email me at info@scott-williams.ca and let’s swap stories and learn from each other. Who knows, you may even want to get involved, be a guest blogger, or know of other professionals who could benefit from connecting.

I’m looking for mental health professionals who don’t suck!

31 thoughts on “I’m looking for counselors who don’t suck!

  1. I want to tell you about a place with many counselor that “don’t suck”. As you probably know, I have lived in complete bondage for my entire life. I turned 40 in January. Until April of this year, I can say with all certainty that I had never known peace, joy, happiness, or any shred of self-love. I went to a magical healing place in Tennessee called “Onsite”. I went through the “Living Centered” program, which was just 6.5 days. Many would think, “Yeah right!!! What in the world could one accomplish in 6.5 days?” Well, I had been in the most lethal, clinical depression which had me literally at the precipice of death from October 2012 through March of this year. THIS program, got to the root of the root of the root of the ROOT. I have never worked harder in my entire life, Scott. I have never cried harder. I have never laughed harder. I have never felt deeper. I have never loved more. This program spawned a Renaissance of my soul. Three months later I am healed, delivered, and free. I am not only happy, I am blissful. I am filled with peace, gratitude, and contentedness. Moreover, I love ME. I am secure and my entire life has changed more than I could ever, ever express. Onsite is not a hospital or a place to treat primary addiction. It’s just indescribable… It’s beautiful. It transformed me and every person that I had the honor of going through the program with. I have so many friends that I would die for that I made at Onsite. They’re family. We’ve shared something so sacred and intimate that are souls are forever intertwined with one another’s. Chaz (Charles) Shipley of Wyoming was my group leader/therapist. He’s the most gifted, compassionate, invested, genuine soul… He changed my life…and my kids’ lives forever. I know now that all of my dysfunction and pain stemmed from childhood trauma, which I worked through and faced head on. I was given permission to feel my feelings. I was told that I deserve love. And for once I embraced and believed it. My life is NOT EVER going to end in suicide like my poor mother’s did. I am FREE.

    The counselor’s there “don’t suck” and are, in fact, some of the absolute best in the entire nation. I especially love the clinical director, Bill Lockey. WOW, Scott. This place is on hallowed ground. Every second of every minute felt as if were orchestrated by God. I couldn’t be more thankful. If you haven’t head about Onsite, you should take a gander at their website, which doesn’t reveal too much… just like I won’t reveal too much as not to detract from anyone else’s experience. Their website is http://www.OnsiteWorkshops.com. I could go on forever and a day about this place. I am forever grateful for their staff. They saved my life I mean they “literally” SAVED my life.

    Ava Elizabeth Wisdom ❤

  2. I have the most awesome sauce therapist around! A no bullshit approach,completely real and knows her stuff. All the ‘difficult’ cases in the office are passed onto her. She is familiar with LOTS of disorder and is an excellent trauma therapist.

    HOWEVER, since it’s the therapist themselves you wish to contact you, my reference would be of little value. But you’re right, most therapists SUCK and I’ve had plenty of them!

  3. It is so refreshing to witness an awareness on the ‘other side’ of the couch that there is a need for competent and well informed mental health professionals. (BTW thanks for liking my post)…All the best to you and yes, please do create a network of Mental Health Professionals who don’t suck! They are desperately needed…

  4. Hi Scott, Thanks for liking my post “The Road to Freedom”. Your blog is very interesting. My counselor told me to “swap seats” with my abuser. I continued in the abusive relationship after she gave him that validation. The next counselor, unbeknown to me, was from a mental health place. The narcissist in my life had the counselors convinced I was mentally ill. I probably looked like I was, I’d been turned me in to a sniveling wreck by the abuser, I had a bipolar mother to cope with, and I’d just lost my father to cancer. I gave up on counseling, it just wasn’t a safe place for me. I read in the Bible that one of Jesus name’s was “wonderful counselor” so in desperation turned to Him for help. I constructed a safe place in a place called “the Kingdom” where I could meet and talk with Him, and He got me through. The Kingdom is a story but its also a real place. He restored my soul and got me onto the right road. I’ve learned a lot and still following after Him. I finally found a good counselor two years ago, she was one of my business customers and we swapped counseling for computer work. Although she’s not a Christian believer she was quite happy to respect my belief and work in with the Lord, so it was great to find not all counselors suck!

    1. That’s wonderful that you turned to the “wonderful counsellor”. You’ve encourage me to remember that he’s always there and you don’t need to schedule an appointment. God bless and continue to cling to Jesus Christ the one who can be there and heal all hurts beyond what we even imagined. I’m so glad you found him and found someone to walk along side you and support you as you cling to him.

      1. Thanks Kate 🙂 I’m a work in progress, as we all are, going from strength to strength. It’s great you know “the wonderful counsellor” too. I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion.
        Philippians 1:9
        God bless, Jo

  5. After a bad divorce I did some therapy for a short while. What I learned was not to get evening appointments as the counselor (and there were two different ones) had trouble staying awake. Guess my issues weren’t very interesting. If I ever go again, it will be morning appointments for sure!

  6. My experiences with counselors has been nothing short of horrific. First when I was 16 had a family therapist whose main goal seemed to be convincing each one of us of our need for total dependence on him. 25 years later my brother and dad are STILL seeing him 1 x a week (maybe more) and honest to goodness, our issues were pretty tame). Six years later, he told me if I quit going to him, because of my “unresolved issues” that I was obviously running from, I would not be able to be successful in any future relationship.

    Been happily married for 11 years and have 7 amazingly well-adjusted kids to show for it. Thank God that was not a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    More recently we went to a marriage counselor who could not function outside of the if you change the way you think mantra. Every time we told him we needed some guidance through specific conflict, he thanked us for helping him be a better counselor by bringing our concern to his attention. Then next session we were right back to if you change the way you think . . .
    He told us at one visit he’d been praying for our son who was scheduled for brain surgery. Too bad he was praying for the wrong one – Noah is our guy with Down syndrome, NOT Chiari malformation. That would be Andres.

    It was all terribly therapeutic for my hubby and me because we experienced total and complete agreement that our counselor’s methodology was completely worthless for the issues we were going to counseling for. Ah, that oneness of body and mind – marital nirvana.

    Really now, if your house is on fire is it not more effective to get the hose (imagine a very small fire) and put it out rather than rethink the positives and negatives and how we feel about fire?

    On the other hand, I am finding claiming and changing my thoughts to be personally extremely effective in bettering my mood and ability to cope and have introduced it to my kids.

    Umm, I think our session is up. 🙂


  7. Wow God bless you for caring. I have had some terrible therapists and right now I don’t have one. I refuse to go throug the therapist mill again. How do some of these people get a license to practice?!!! Its a breath of fresh air to read this blog. Thank you.

  8. Hi Scott,

    I’m not a counselor…yet. But I will be a good one!

    As an intern, I’ve had the opportunity to observe how experienced counselors work. Sadly, and shockingly, some of them try to build rapport with their clients this way: “Hi, I’m So and So. I’m a counselor here. Before we start, we need to fill out some paperwork in order to create a file for you. Have you received treatment/counseling before? have you ever been raped/sexually abused/molested?” and the client looks like o_O… and I feel like o_O

    And this has happened on the very first encounter between the counselor and the client. Some counselors suck because they do not stop to think that the client already experienced all of these things. They should not be mentally raped now.

    “Therapist” or “the rapist”? Empathy is what makes the difference between these two words.

  9. Hi Scott! I am not a counselor, but instead a high school girl that has helped her peers in her own school who needed someone to talk to! So if there are any younger people out there who need to talk and see this, just contact me, or follow my blog where I try to post inspirational, educational, and helpful information. 🙂

  10. Hi Scott, thanks for stopping by, I don’t suck or at least I’ve never been told that I do and I have been helping people since 2008. I hate the thought of clients being locked into seeing a counsellor for years on end, its nearly as bad as the issues they are trying to deal with, I try to be truthful and get to the bottom of their issues as quickly as possible then to let them go. I feel the best way to do this is to offer the client a trusting, loving space that they feel at ease with, then the healing can really fly.

  11. Scott,

    My counselor may not even be human. Sometimes I wonder if he’s really some kind of angel! That sounds loco, but I’m telling you, God divinely placed him in my life. His name is Dr. James Taylor (just like the singer); he is a clinical psychologist in Bedford, TX. Counseling is not his job, it’s absolutely his ministry.

    My mother saw him for years upon years. She was bipolar and had a lot of past hurts and trauma. Even though my mother’s life would end in suicide in 2001, I can honestly say that no one person did for my mother as much as Dr. Taylor did. As a matter of fact, the first line of her 5-page suicide letter said, “Please call Dr. James Taylor…”

    After her death, Dr. Taylor began seeing me, free of charge. I didn’t have insurance at the time. He was profoundly saddened…actually he was devastated about my mother’s death. I remember seeing him at the viewing and at the funeral. He is strong and has solid boundaries but he loved her dearly and always had the ability to see her heart when no one else could. He saw past her illness. He believed in her, and she knew it.

    I’ve been seeing Dr. Taylor since 2001. I have referred others to him. One of my friends who is a counselor went to him for a while. She professed that he was the best she had ever seen.

    I am touched by his quiet, accepting, gentle nature and overwhelmed by his depth and insight. I feel like he can see right into my soul. Like my mother, Dr. Taylor sees my heart. He challenges me greatly but also encourages and inspires me.

    He sees me on Saturdays. He’s seen me at 9 PM at night when I was in crisis one time….he’s always there for me.

    The relationship between a counselor and his or her client is paramount. I don’t have to wonder if Dr. Taylor really cares about me and is with me for any type of monetary reward. He loves me. He’s committed to me. He thinks I am one of most incredible people in the universe. Do you have any idea how that affects me?

    People who struggle with low self-esteem and depression often question the validity of the love that others have for them. I know I do. But with Dr. Taylor there simply is “no” question. It’s authentic. It was for my mother too. God broke the mold when he made Dr. Taylor.

    I’ve been to a million counselors throughout my lifetime. I even studied Psychology and Counseling in college. No one has ever compared to him. No one ever will.

    He is fiercely protective of me, as I am of him. I wish everyone who entered counseling could experience what I’ve experienced. It’s been transformational for me.


  12. Nice! I am a counselor who hopefully doesn’t suck. My biggest fear is that I suck! I think that in itself keeps me on my toes to try and be the best therapist I can be. I have been on the other side and it has been an eye opener: at first I felt like therapy was a crock and I was in the wrong field! But then I realized that the way my therapist operated was just not how I wanted to operate. I am constantly asking my clients how I can help them, if I AM helping them, and if they think that it has been worth while to see me. Anyhoo, I could go on and on, but just thought I’d say hi, thank you for peaking at my blog, and I think you got a good thing going here. I look forward to reading more.
    PS – where are you from? Do you only do online therapy?

    1. Lindsey, great thoughts. I also thought therapy was crap initially, until my life fell apart and I felt powerless.
      I live near Vancouver BC and try to help people out via any medium possible -one on one counseling, email, Skype, Google talk etc. I fas a clinical therapist as a medical center and also work part time for an addictions center. I also do groups for Ridge Meadows Hospice Society – Complex grief
      I think your accountability with your clients is amazing.

  13. Hey! You sound like my kind a guy! I really want to read your stuff. Thanks for looking at my blog too. I hope to “talk” to you soon! Linda Amthor Hoenigsberg (aka Linda Lochridge for the memoir blog. ;o)

  14. The title of this entry caught my attention. The very first one that I saw (haven’t blogged about it yet) made snap judgements, focused on areas I wasn’t interested in exploring, and recommended medication within 10 minutes of talking to me. If I didn’t know better, her behavior would have made me write off counseling for good. Thanks for visiting my blog, btw, and for clicking ‘like.’ I hope that by sharing my journey with others that I can help folks understand that counseling is not the end of the world.

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