Is Therapy Right For Me?

Medically reviewed by Karen Foster, LPC
Updated June 4, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team
Please be advised, the below article might mention trauma-related topics that include suicide, substance use, or abuse which could be triggering to the reader.
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Sometimes, life presents significant challenges for all of us, and when therapy gets hard, it's important to remember that facing those challenges with the help of a therapist can ultimately lead to growth and healing. Maybe you're trying to navigate a romantic relationship, the changes of moving to a new city, or a death in the family. Perhaps you're tired of trying to manage anxiety or depression on your own and have been turning to unhelpful coping strategies to ease your painful feelings. Whatever you're facing, therapy could be a beneficial resource in your quest for healing.

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Therapy can serve a multitude of purposes in your life

“Is therapy right for me?" 

You may be wondering if you should take the leap and see a therapist. There are many reasons you might choose to seek therapy, such as dealing with grief, life transitions, difficulties in relationships, or mental illness, none of which are invalid. Contrary to certain stigmas, going to a therapist doesn’t make you weak; rather, seeking therapy makes you brave for asking for emotional support and guidance. All people can benefit from working with a good therapist from time to time.

Everyone faces challenges in life, and sometimes these obstacles can be difficult to recover from, such as post traumatic stress disorder or psychological issues. Various kinds of mental illness, such as eating disorders, depression, and bipolar disorder, can all be reasons to find a therapist or other mental health professional who can help. If you feel unable to reestablish a healthy mindset on your own after experiencing a setback, talking to the right therapist may give you the extra encouragement and therapy can help you need to move forward and restore your mental health.

Whether you choose to see a therapist in person or online, having an unbiased, trained professional in your corner can prove highly beneficial for your overall health. In addition to your loved ones who genuinely care about you and your mental health, talk therapy can help you sort through your feelings during sessions and offer guidance to teach you coping skills to manage life's challenges. Although therapy often takes work, it’s usually worth it.

However, you may not know if therapy is right for your situation, like couples therapy, group therapy, or addressing sleep issues, until you give it a chance. If you've never been to therapy before, it might seem daunting at first. It can be helpful to remember that you can switch therapists if needed and stop therapy at any time. Therapy helps by focusing on you and your needs, and you get the final word in your care.

Why seek therapy?

If you're living with a mental health disorder such as anxiety or depression, or if you're experiencing issues with children or behaviors you can't solve alone, you may want to seek treatment in the form of therapy. Many people find that therapy sessions help relieve stress or teach them how to cope with everyday challenges that may agitate their physical body in the form of digestive issues or chronic headaches. Stress and anxiety can cause these symptoms, and therapy can be a powerful resource to help you figure out what's bothering you and why you feel the way you do. Below are some example concerns that might lead you to pursue therapy.


Depression can take a toll on your mental and physical health. You may have trouble getting out of bed in the morning and feel unmotivated throughout the day. This can make it difficult to function in spaces like work, school, or even home. No matter how hard you try, you might not be able to shake the negative thoughts and feelings you’re experiencing. In some cases, people with depression may even have thoughts of suicide. All of these may be signs that you could benefit from seeing a therapist. A therapist can help you develop a treatment plan, learn new coping techniques, and find your motivation again.


Another reason you might choose to go to therapy is for anxiety, a feeling characterized by excessive worry and fear. Anxiety can cause your quality of life to decline and make it difficult to attend to your daily responsibilities. You might find that you're constantly overthinking and running through different scenarios in your head. Even if you don't have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, such as generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), a therapist may still be able to help you work through your symptoms and give you the tools you need to thrive. Anxiety often accompanies other mental health issues, and a trained professional can address each of them. Anxiety can also lead to many physical symptoms, so it’s important to note that you may benefit from medical advice from your doctor as well.


Interpersonal relationships

Therapy can also be helpful with many types of relationships, including those with family and romantic partners. Maybe you're struggling to talk to your partner about something happening in your life or having trouble expressing yourself in the relationship. Some people find themselves in abusive relationships and don’t know what steps to take next. You may find that individual counseling provides an outlet for you to talk about your relationship, or you and your partner might pursue couples counseling together. Either way, expect a therapy session to be a positive source of support for relationship troubles.

Trauma and recovery

If you've experienced trauma, such as sexual assault, bullying, a natural disaster, or anything else that deeply affects your well-being, therapy may be an ideal setting in which to address your feelings. A traumatic event can be difficult to process on your own, and getting through it may require professional help. Whether you seek trauma-informed therapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), or any other treatment that focuses on trauma and healing, you can work with a therapist to find something that works effectively for you. 

Life changes

Everyone has challenging moments, especially during significant life changes, such as divorce, separation, relocation, or the death of a loved one. During these critical times, therapy might help you adjust and learn to cope in productive ways. While it is sometimes possible to navigate life changes on your own, working with a therapist may make the process more efficient. Recognizing that you might need therapy is an essential step toward personal growth.

When you have a child who's struggling

Adolescence can be a difficult and challenging time. Having a therapist to talk to about the challenges your child or teenager is facing can provide a sense of relief. You might have questions about your parenting style or how to help your child most effectively through their unique challenges. Therapists are trained to listen without judgment or bias and help you through your concerns with compassion and patience. Sometimes, simply having an outlet in which to express yourself can be all that you need to feel better. There are also options for family therapy in which you can join your child in sessions and work as a team to find solutions. 

Substance misuse

Those living with substance use disorder may find that they need professional intervention to heal from their addiction. If you’re trying to stop drinking or using drugs, a therapist may be able to give you tools and techniques to accomplish this goal. Substance use disorder often coexists with other mental health challenges, like depression and anxiety. A therapist may address each of these concerns individually and help you identify the root of each one. Although substance use can seriously disturb your daily life, therapy can help you to understand your behavior and can offer solutions. 

Therapy can serve a multitude of purposes in your life

Benefits of therapy

Therapy can have many potential benefits for those who choose to participate. These can vary from person to person and could include the following:

Learning coping techniques

If you feel emotionally burdened because of anxiety or interpersonal relationship problems, it might be time to pursue therapy to learn some effective coping techniques and to better understand how your brain functions during a crisis. If you’re having trouble managing your emotions in friendships or romantic relationships, a therapist can teach coping skills and emotional control. If you are having a difficult time getting through life on your own, consider letting a counselor offer their support.

Interpersonal effectiveness

In dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), an important skill that you may learn is interpersonal effectiveness. This means being able to express your feelings and emotions in a relationship to ensure your needs are met. Having strong, healthy relationships can increase your life satisfaction and help ensure that you have a support system to lean on when times get tough. 

Emotional control

Many people find managing their emotions to be challenging and negative emotions may affect your day-to-day life. Therapists can teach you how to establish more control over your emotions, whether you’re experiencing anger, frustration, sadness, or any other feeling that overwhelms you. Having the ability to manage your nervous system and keep your emotions steady even during times of stress can be a vital skill. Therapists can teach you emotional control through DBT individually or in conjunction with other types of therapy, such as psychodynamic therapy or internal family systems therapy.

Online counseling with BetterHelp

Regardless of what you’re facing in life, online counseling may help you move past it. An online therapist can work with you to set goals, create a treatment plan, and find ways to maintain your mental health. BetterHelp is an online counseling platform that has thousands of licensed therapists who are experienced in a variety of areas. This means that you can conveniently get matched with a therapist who specializes in relationships, careers, depression, or anything else you’re experiencing. If you don’t connect with your therapist or find your experience helpful, you can switch providers until you find the right therapist.

The efficacy of online therapy 

One of the main factors that set online therapy apart from traditional in-person therapy is that online therapy can be an affordable alternative to in-office therapy. Research shows that electronically delivered therapy is as effective as traditional in-person counseling, which can make it a convenient option for those who wish to start therapy. A study conducted by Brigham Young University researchers found that technology-based therapy provides other added benefits, including affordability from home.

Therapist reviews

“Dayna is a fantastic counselor. She has really helped me to shift my perspective during a very challenging time. I used to have a lot of ideas about therapy, and video chatting with Dayna has completely changed my thoughts on the matter. She has made me feel comfortable and heard, and I appreciate her so very much! Highly recommend her to anyone, and BetterHelp as well! :)”

“Erin has been great with me; she is very flexible and understanding. Ridiculously brilliant and intuitive. I would recommend Erin to anyone because I feel like I have the best therapist around. I was new to therapy and uncomfortable at first, but she has done wonders with coaching me and making me feel at ease about the whole idea. Not only has she helped me with my own mental struggles but helped me increase stability in my marriage and home.”


Therapy can be a powerful tool when you’re trying to heal from trauma, make important life decisions, or overcome a mental health condition. It can also be helpful for maintaining positive mental health and discussing general concerns, questions, and opinions expressed about your day-to-day life. Take the first step and reach out to BetterHelp today.

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