There is a documentary on Channel 4 called I Don't Trust My Therapist, and it is a really fascinating watch, particularly from the view of a therapist. I Don’t Trust My Therapist is an investigation of an online therapy platform. The presenter sets out to investigate the claims that the platform has about making therapy accessible and affordable. As The Wellbeing Therapy Hut, we also want to help make therapy affordable and accessible, so here are some of our thoughts on the documentary.
Some of the claims that are uncovered in the documentary include insufficient checks on client age or checks on when a client is in a crisis situation. Not only this, but unreliable therapists that had poor time-keeping, and clients feeling like they aren't believed, as well as complaints not being taken seriously. These are definitely concerning behaviours and issues, and can completely understand why these need to be investigated. When you're looking for help and to be vulnerable with someone like a therapist, you want to be able to be heard, validated, and after all, helped, not made to feel worse.
How The Wellbeing Therapy Hut is Different
The Wellbeing Therapy Hut want to reassure our clients, as well as any perspective clients, that we as an organisation are approved by the The National Counselling and Psychotherapy Society (NCPS). This means that we have been assessed and vetted by this professional body. They have checked and approved our procedures and policies, from safeguarding to complaints, and gone through all of our policies. This means that if a client did make a complaint, we are accountable to the NCPS (a comparison is how schools are accountable to Ofsted when someone makes a complaint about a teacher or a school).
Individually, counsellors may also be registered with another body, such as BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy). This means that they are also accountable to that professional body for counsellors too. We vet all of our counsellors that work with us, and take all of the required steps to make sure that we are practicing ethically.
We also take a multi-agency approach to make sure that our clients have a network around them, if this is what is needed. This could be working with a client's GP if they are feeling in crisis. We want to help clients to feel better, and when needed, we will help them to get other necessary support too.
We understand that BetterHelp have helped a lot of clients, but as is seen in the documentary, there are those that haven't been able to get the help that they need. One of the things that the documentary highlights is that the therapeutic relationship is what helps the work to happen the best. This is one of the things that The Hut has as an ethos and something that we strongly believe in.
Our director, Jess, is completely of the belief that a therapist can have all of the knowledge, but if they are not genuine in the room with their clients and work to build that relationship, it is pointless.
This is something that we hold closely at our core. There have been occasion where we have helped clients transition to a new therapist, because sometimes it doesn't click and sometimes it does. It needs to be something you're open about and we can make changes to help you by discussing what you want from your therapist so we can choose the most suited for you. We want all of our clients to feel empowered in their therapy journey, not that they are just a number or a cog in the wheel. We are a very small business and it is not about making money, but about making a difference.
One thing to note with us is that we can not make a diagnosis. We can support, help, and explore how you are feeling, but can't diagnose. This is something that would need to be addressed with the NHS if that is what you are looking for.