Many times, when looking for a counselor, it can be overwhelming.  There are so many “types” of counselors out there, how do you know if one would be a good fit for you, or your family?  Many times, parents may look at a list off of their insurance panel’s website, or someone might take recommendations of a couples’ counselor from a family friend.  It’s difficult to even know where to start.

If you’re ready to take the giant step in finding a therapist / counselor, here are some questions to ask when calling around.

1. Are you licensed?   How long have you been practicing?   What are your credentials, and what do those mean?
2. What is your experience and training in (your presenting problem).
3. What are your fees? And what does that cover? Note: If you are wanting to use your insurance, be sure to call your insurance ahead of time and find out if specific providers are on your specific plans. So you know whether they are in-network, out-of-network or  neither.
4. What methods do you use? or “What will therapy look like?”

Specifically for children:
1. As a caregiver how will I be involved in my child’s therapy?
2. How will you work with my pediatrician and my child’s school?
3. Can you explain play therapy to me?

A child therapist, will most likely offer a parent intake before the child comes to therapy.  At this time, parents can ask to see the play room, and ask about the dynamics of play therapy. Your child’s therapist should feel comfortable and at ease explaining all of this.  For me, during my intakes, if parents struggle with how to tell their kids, I will provide a handout and a lend them a book about play therapy to read to the children.

Personally, it takes a significant time over the phone or through e-mail when potential clients ask these specific questions, however – I practice under the belief that finding a counselor is like dating, you need to get to know a few before you find a good fit, both ways!

Many Blessings,



Jennie Wilson is a child and adolescent therapist. She holds the credentials of a Licensed Professional Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor