Psychiatry & Psychology--General/What to do?

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Question
I`ve tried therapy, but I always have a panic attack and cannot speak. I`ve also tried it over video chat. Are there any purely text-based counselling options (i.e. over email or chat room without video or audio)?

Answer
That can happen, Mary.  (In fact, since it's a well-known problem, I'm a bit puzzled over why the therapist did not work with you on the communication problem when it happened.)  

Face-to-face meetings may not work for everyone -- because of location, inability to leave where one is, or shyness. So I think there should be email counseling available but the obvious problems would be how the therapist and the client would know that the other is legitimate, and how payment would be made. Sorry I don't know of any, but that doesn't mean they don't exist.

So what to do?  If you can locate someone who seems to be suitable for you, you could send her (I'm just guessing that you might be more comfortable with a female) an email (or, if you don't have the address, a letter) explaining the problem, and asking if at least the first session or two could be via keyboarding.

Or you could have a friend or relative make a face-to-face appointment and explain the problem, and maybe accompany you to the first meeting.

Finally, there have been reported cases where the psychotherapy was deemed by both sides to have been a signal success, even though in some of the sessions not a word was spoken by either side.

I hope those comments will be helpful, and feel free to send a follow-up if you have one.

Alan

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Alan Auerbach

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Taught psychology for 30 years, authored four textbooks. Specialize in introductory and industrial/organizational psychology, but will tackle wider range of areas.

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