“Do black people really come to therapy and tell you their business?” “Are there a lot of black therapists out there?” These are a few questions I get asked a lot. While I understand the desire to have a therapist of color for your child (especially if you are of color), it may not always be possible.
I have previously had a Caucasian therapist and Latin therapist. Though not people of color, they were able to meet my needs. It’s important to ask necessary questions to ensure that ANY therapist would be a good fit for your child.
Here are some examples of questions that would be appropriate to ask:
-Do you see differences in our backgrounds effecting our communication and/or treatment?
-What is your experience in working with black children with issues like my child?
-What kind of training did you get to work with children with mental health issues/concerns?
And of course, ask yourself, “Did I walk away with a feeling of trust and confidence in this therapist? Would my child feel comfortable spending time with this therapist?”
The mental health community continues to strive towards being culturally competent. Culture plays an important role in our lives, so it makes sense to ensure your child’s therapist has views that you agree with.
There are a few sites that can assist with finding a therapist of color. If none can be located, I hope the tips above can help you to find a therapist that can meet your child’s needs.
Find a Therapist of Color: Therapy for Black Girls, For the Colored Girls, Therapy for Black Men and of course Psychology Today.
By: Stephonia Llewellyn