Interns tend to get a bad reputation when it comes to new clients.
Making the decision to go to therapy in general is one that involves risk and vulnerability along with time and money-so the hesitation is warranted. Most individuals want to see someone with years and years of experience and they don’t want to be the person that is getting “learned on”, like some sort of science experiment!
We get it. However, there are some overlooked advantages that come with seeing a counseling intern specifically at DBT of South Jersey, and we don’t want you to miss them, in addition to some common misconceptions that we want to debunk!
Here are some of the top advantages we have seen:
1. Fresh Perspectives and Boundless Enthusiasm:
Counseling interns are arguably some of the most hungry individuals in the world of therapy when it comes to learning and doing the best work possible with their clients. They bring a fresh set of eyes and a unique outlook on your challenges, offering innovative approaches and creative solutions. Their enthusiasm to make a difference in your life is contagious and can inspire meaningful breakthroughs.
2. Affordability & Accessibility:
We know that seeking counseling services can be a strain on the budget. Here’s where counseling interns shine! Our interns are about one third of the cost of an individual session with other therapists at our practice. This is able to happen because interns are compensated through their training and experience, so the cost is less when compared to a therapist who is employed. You can receive quality care without compromising your financial well-being. Also, did you know that our counseling interns are fully trained in DBT before starting to see clients? This is one of the unique qualities of our practice, that our interns go through the same level of intensive training that each newly hired, licensed therapist would receive!
3. Supervised Expertise:
Rest assured, counseling interns don’t work in isolation. They receive extensive supervision from our experienced clinical team who guide and support them throughout the process. This means you benefit from the combined expertise of both the intern and their knowledgeable supervisor and the entire consultation team, as they are a part of that as well. Your counseling experience will never have this level of involvement and care behind the scenes than when working with a counseling intern.
Along with top advantages, here are some common misconceptions, debunked!
1. “They have no experience.”
While you could be the very first counseling client to an intern (how monumental!!), they are not coming to you with no relevant training or background in the field. Interns at our practice are at the end of their Master’s graduate training program in clinical counseling or social work. This means they have spent countless hours learning, reading, training and practicing counseling techniques before entering the field. It is also highly likely that your intern has had previous experience working in a mental health setting such as a hospital, outpatient setting, detox and more; all of which is a relevant support to their experience as an intern.
2. “They won’t be able to help me.”
This is one that comes from the first misconception, that an intern won’t have enough or any experience, therefore, how could they be helpful? Part of what makes any type of therapy work is the relationship between the therapist and the client. While experience helps, it is not the only factor that helps move someone along in their journey or closer to their goals. There is also no guarantee that someone who has been doing therapy for years will be able to help. Time in training does not directly correlate with outcomes, and interns do have limits as to who they can help if it is outside of their scope of practice, though this is no different from therapists.
3. “I don’t want someone to “learn” on me.”
This is an interesting one. Mainly because it implies that learning stops after school. In a way, aren’t we all learning if we are committed to growing? Again, this is not to minimize the fear that comes with taking a risk and setting up a therapy appointment that may be amplified by starting with a student! The fear is valid because therapy in itself can be scary! What we want you to consider is that if any provider considers themselves out of the learning phase, that may be more cause for concern.
Remember, your mental well-being matters, and seeking support is a courageous step towards self-care. We hope this information helped to uncover the hidden gems of counseling interns and discover the transformative power they hold. To start your healing journey with one of our amazing interns, book a call with us today!