How to break up with your Therapist


At times when approaching the therapist can be challenging, what can be equally troublesome is breaking up from a therapist. Have you ever found yourself being uncomfortable around your therapist? Or Did u ever feel that you somehow don’t connect with them? Realising this in itself is a huge step for the client. Probably this is the time when you feel the need to break up with your therapist. It’s crucial to approach this decision with care, sensitivity, and respect for both yourself and your therapist.

Here’s a guide on when to say goodbye :

1. When the therapist is not Trained as per your needs

Therapy is not one-size-fits-all. Every therapist has different experience and training and not all of them will be equipped to meet your unique needs and that’s fine. For example – you are looking for a therapist to solve problems like self-esteem, self-confidence and humanistic existential issues but the therapist specialises in trauma-ridden cases. Here you may not resonate with the therapist and hence looking for a therapist who can meet your needs is crucial.

2. You feel Stagnant in therapy

Therapy focuses on improving how you think, feel and behave. As emphasised by Forrester, your relationship with your therapist should be supportive and growth-oriented. If you’ve been attending several sessions but don’t feel like you’re progressing and often feel stuck or stagnant in therapy towards achieving your goals then try talking directly with your therapist about this. If that doesn’t help, it may be time to consider finding a new therapy.

Read More: Why you Should Start Therapy?

3. Your Sessions aren’t making you feel better overall.

Ideally, you would always walk away from therapy feeling like your therapist has lifted some of your burden, not added to it. In reality, it’s normal to sometimes leave therapy feeling upset due to the process that stirred up the range of emotions. That’s different from feeling distressed every time (or nearly every time) you leave because your therapist isn’t listening to you, isn’t considerate enough to your needs, or isn’t helping you out to deal with this kind of emotional discomfort.

Read More: Affording Therapy: Breaking Down Budget-Friendly Mental Health Options

4. The distinctions in identification between the two of you are not taken into consideration by your therapist.

It’s possible that you visit a therapist whose identity is almost entirely different from yours and that you don’t really mind. However, your therapist must be particularly sensitive and mindful throughout your sessions if you are discussing components of your identity in therapy that you do not reveal, such as your gender, color, or religion. They don’t regard your limits.

According to Forrester, “your relationship with your therapist is a professional one, not a personal one. As part of the therapeutic relationship, the therapist has an obligation to establish and uphold boundaries.” Be wary if your therapist is using your sessions to talk about themselves or is pressuring you to do something you don’t feel comfortable with or ready to accomplish.

Read More: Attachment Therapy Essentials for Mental Health

5. You Can’t be Vulnerable with your therapist

Your therapist should be someone you can be open with. You should feel comfortable sharing aspects of yourself that you may not have shared before during your sessions. Building that kind of trust may take some time, but if you feel that you can’t be vulnerable with your therapist—either due to a lack of trust or a fear of criticism—you might want to consider finding someone else.

How to say Goodbye with to your therapist?

The best way to end your relationship with your therapist is to talk to them about why you want to make a change. “Speaking to your therapist about your concerns offers a space for reflection, she says. Together, you can talk about why it isn’t working for you and decide if there is a fix for it or not.” If you’re not sure how to start the breakup conversation, Here are some suggestions courtesy of Forrester:

Read More: Bibliotherapy: Origin, Types and Process

  • When we started, I wanted to work on so and so problems. But I am not finding any solution. I don’t think that this is working.”
  • “I realize I am looking for something different now, but thank you so much for what you offered me. I appreciate it.”
  • “I don’t feel as if it is a good fit and I don’t think it makes sense to continue our sessions.”

If you can’t have this conversation with your therapist in person, writing an email or sending a text is also OK. You could say something like, “Hi, I’m writing to let you know that I will not be coming to you for therapy because of XYZ. I appreciate my time with you and the work you do. Wishing you the best.” So breaking away from your therapist is crucial for your growth. Instead of getting into practices like ghosting or avoiding the psychologist, be open and clear about your necessities and expectations.

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