Finding the best psychologist or mental health worker for you isn’t an easy feat.
For one, finding someone you feel you can trust enough to open up to about your insecurities and inner turmoils is hard enough but finding someone who is covered by your health insurance can be even more difficult. On top of that, factors like location and time often come into play. Women of color in particular face a certain type of challenge when it comes to mental health care. According to the American Psychological Association, just 5.3% of psychologists in the United Statesare Black. Eighty-three percent are white. This means finding a mental health provider who can connect with your personal experiences can be beyond difficult.
We asked our users on Fierce for mental health provider tips and received some pretty inciteful answers.
Check them out below!
“Ask about sliding scales (cost based on income), check with insurance provider, apply for government-funded health care benefits, seek support from your child’s school—can refer you to a provider, college students can ask about on-campus services, workplace can also direct you to resources. Being resourceful is so important especially when it comes to our well-being. Hope this helps.” –karinalizlu
“Just started BetterHelp and they offer financial assistance. Got matched with the first therapist that I actually like after 10 years of trying. Highly recommend!”-marilynscarlet
“Ask your HR department if they have an Employment Assistance Program. If they do it means that the employer covers a certain amount of sessions with a therapist, counselor, psychologist, etc. which means you pay nothing for those first few sessions. Some EAP’s also cover the first meeting with financial advisors, lawyers & a bunch of other things!”- dee_anes
“I agree! So many times I’ve needed therapy but I couldn’t afford it. I’ve had to use what I got.” –ladinesphotographypage
“BetterHelp and SimplePractice are remote licensed therapist that offer sliding scale as low as $75 a session.”-rocio_rami5 “Some insurances are covering copays on sessions because of the pandemic! Check with your insurance!”- b_diaz990
“If your insurance includes Teledoc, each therapy session is $5 out of pocket. Yes it’s virtual, but everything else is right now! I truly appreciate my therapist and I’m grateful it’s not $40 a session like it used to be.”- livsimplyfl
“Check healingconnections-Therapy.com/blog. I’m a therapist and wrote a post on the accessibility of therapy. There’s therapy for every price point!” – gyera19
“Yes!!! 1000%. Many community colleges and universities have resources as part of student services. You can start there if you’re a student. Or reach out to a local therapist and ask if they know of local low cost options.” –runeatrepeat
“Federally qualified health care centers many times they offer counseling on a sliding fee scale!” –amor805
“If in Cali: reach out to Department of Mental Health. (DMH). If your child is under the age of 15 they can provide respite services. This is to help get a diagnosis or help families who have a child with a diagnosis.”- 143kimberly
“Hello! I am a graduate counseling student about to have my M.Ed in professional mental health counseling. Some long time friends and I have started a small business, and we’d love you to follow us along on our journey as well!” –mindful_resolutions4u
“We are Mindful Resolutions, a holistic wellness company that creates affordable courses based on the 8 dimensional model of wellness! Our goal is to bring wellness/mental health education and coping skills to people who wouldn’t normally be able to access or afford therapy, or for those who want an additional resource. A course is only $49.99 compared to $80 or more for an average therapy session!”- Mindful Resolutions
“Open season is coming up! Time to review your healthcare costs and make sure your insurance meets your needs. If there are barriers to preventing you from affording health insurance, check out state or local Medicaid and ACÁ options.” –brittsticks
“@openpathpsychotherapy has sessions from $30-$60 and a wide selection of therapists that you can select based on their intersections (race, gender, etc) and what they specialize in.” –gangstahippie04
“For essential workers in California, therapy is being provided for free through www.covid19counselingca.com. @latinxtherapy is offering free therapy to farm workers and janitorial workers currently working in hospital settings anywhere in the US. And finally, for all others, @openpathpsychotherapy offers low cost therapy throughout the US.” –julimuli246
“@fiercebymitu we host free virtual Pranic Healing nights every Tuesday from 7:30pm to 10pm. The participant will enjoy twenty five minutes of energy healing focused on reducing stress, anxiety and tension. Please dm me for more info.”-marcelaarrietaofficial
“Affordable mental health care is important, but what about the wait times? My mother tried to get therapy but had to wait 6months before getting a session. This was BEFORE the pandemic. When affordable is important, so is wait time.”- hannibelle_
“If you’re in austin, tx there is sliding scale therapy and psychiatric care they austin Travis county integral care.” –ernipie
“National Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Hotlines like 1-800-656-4673 (HOPE) can connect Survivors with local centers that offer many services—some include therapists and psychiatrists for medication, as well.” –godwasawoman
Have you ever not spoken up out of fear for how people might judge your accent? Or maybe you’ve heard racial comments about how your abuelos or your tías speak?
Well, one Latina councilwoman knows exactly how so many of us feel after having experienced racist comments during a Zoom meeting on racial injustice amid her community’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout. But instead of remaining silent, she is urging anyone with an accent, especially Latinos in her community, to speak up and wear it with pride.
A chat about racism led to racist comments about Navarro’s accent.
A Maryland county was hosting a virtual meeting the racial disparities taking place amid the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, when two people giggled and mocked the accent of the county’s only Latina councilmembers.
During the, Nancy Navarro, a member of the Montgomery County Council, spoke passionately about the county’s coronavirus vaccine rollout, which she said is failing people of color. According to CDC data, Maryland ranks near the bottom when it comes to getting vaccines in people’s arms.
“For me personally, I’ve always had this interesting dilemma in my years of public service, which has been this bizarre disconnect in terms of who we are in Montgomery County,” Navarro, the first Latina and the only woman serving on the council, said. “We’re still perceived as a totally, we’re like some other hologram of a county that doesn’t look anything like who we actually are.”
As Navarro spoke, there was some chatter and laughter in the background — two people who apparently thought they were muted were talking about Navarro’s accent.
“I love how her accent comes out and pronounces words like she thinks they’re pronounced,” one person said, specifically calling out the way Navarro pronounced the words “represent” and “hologram.”
Navarro spoke up and urged anyone with an accent to wear it with pride.
Navarro wasn’t aware that the incident had happened until two staff members notified her of that the employees had said in the background.
“What happened to me on Tuesday was not an isolated incident, it fits a pattern of microaggressions and racist acts that wittingly and unwittingly make the workplace, and by extension, our community spaces hostile spaces for people of color,” Navarro told CBS News.
“Make no mistake, these dysfunctions are deeply ingrained in our county and in our country, racism has become a public health crisis,” Navarro added. “What hurt was that these employees are part of our team, charged with working daily with a diverse team of Council members and staff on initiatives that require a sensitivity to and respect for racial and ethnic differences.”
Navarro’s story is one that so many of us can relate to.
Like so many of us, our friends, and our family, Navarro’s story is one that is widely reflected in our community. She was born in Venezuela but came to the U.S. with her family when she was 10. Her family eventually returned to Venezuela but Navarro came back to the U.S. for college and moved to Maryland with her husband, where they’ve lived since the 1990s. Her story is 100% American.
Navarro hopes that this incident will drive people to consider the impact of their words and actions. And, ultimately, she hopes the council will strengthen its efforts to hire a staff that reflects the diversity in its community.
No doubt the current quarantine has been desperately tragic at times. Still, many are choosing to find the bright and positive aspects of life in seclusion. From picking up new hobbies to finding time to save money and work on home projects, Reddit users are finding the bright side of these current times.
“Not to mention wasting time just sitting in a traffic jam to get to a desk that I also happen to have in the office at home…”-coffecup1978
“I’ve been WFH since last march and I must have saved about £2k in fuel.”-throwRAffff
“I got to spend a lot more time with aging pets. I had to put down a cat this fall but for seven months he got to lay on my keyboard and interrupt zoom calls all day. I also have a 12 year old lab and spending this year with her all day every day has been awesome.”-Santos_L_Halper_II
“A lot of restaraunts have really upped their online ordering and drive through game. Like a well oiled machine.”- Wilhelm_Amenbreak
“And some shockingly haven’t. I got take out from one of my favorite restaurants the other day, and it took so long to order on the phone, that next time I’m just going to go down there and place an order in person. I had to speak to three different people to accomplish it – being put on hold each time – and give my credit card over the phone. And before you ask, yes, they advertise take out on their website and menu, so it isn’t as if it’s a service they don’t normally provide.”- Amelaclya1
“I got 6 to 8 hours a week back in commuting time. That’s, like, about a whole extra work day every week that’s mine to do with as I please. It’s been incredible. And I hadn’t realized how stressed my commute makes me. I don’t have to be careful not to forget anything before I leave for work (or when I’m leaving the office at the end of the day), I don’t have to pack lunch, I don’t have to make sure I’m dressed for the weather both now and in 8 hours when I’m coming home. I don’t have to get wet when I get that wrong, and I don’t have to spend a day at work with my shoes and socks wet, or all of me wet. I don’t have to wait at a bus stop for forty minutes waiting for a bus that should have been here thirty minutes ago.” –S_thyrsoidea
“No Commute =
Well no commute
No commute people
No delayed trains
No weather … less health issues (even just less colds) from constant changing temps
Morning – 2 hours extra sleep and not having to get ready
Day – generally chores, laundry, cleaning, dishes get done on work down time. So this frees time on the weekends
Afternoon – 1.5 hours of me time.
Communing total costs for my household (just for work) was around $500 a month. The added cost of heating / cooling, electricity, etc from being home is nowhere near that.
Food – I can cook all my own food
Dont need to replace going to work stuff. (clothes, shoes, beauty products, etc)
I can workout more regularly, get sleep, eat better.
Also getting stuck at work by 5 minutes, no longer means getting a train 30 minutes later …. it actually means 5 minutes.”- 424f42_424f42
I’m not only saving close to 4h a day by not having to commute, but also the costs of public transportation and overpriced lunch near the office. In practice, it’s like having my shifts reduced by 20% and getting a pay raise at the same time” –SchrodingerSemicolon
“I am a recovering alcoholic. Spending most of my time at home exploring my hobby’s, attending virtual counseling, and rebuilding relationships with my loved ones has helped me to realize that no substance has ever given me so much contentment, and I honestly never want to give up what I have now. In 4 weeks, I will be celebrating my 2 year sobriety anniversary. The grass (underneath the foot of snow) has never seemed greener!”- artgirl483
“Corollary: Not needing to act like you want to talk to anyone while you wait for the coffee machine in the morning. And the overall unhealthy coffee culture offices breed, in general.”- dontFart_InSpaceSuit
“If it wasn’t for the pandemic, my dad would be dead right now.
He likes to come over to our place while I’m at work and spend time with my dogs. My papillon got away from him and wanted to play chase in our garage, which is basically a storage unit right now, and she was bobbing and weaving through boxes. When he caught her and took her inside, he noticed he was having a hard time catching his breath.
My brother, who lives with me, offered to let him use his new oxygen meter, which he bought after he developed some temporary sleep apnea after he had covid. The meter was frighteningly low, so he told our dad to go to the walk-in clinic. They told him as soon as he explained his oxygen level that he needed to go to the ER.
He tests negative for covid at the ER, but they found MULTIPLE blood clots in his lungs. They kept him a few days in the hospital, and he made a complete recovery with no permanent damage.
I know my dad very well. Under normal circumstances, he would have gone home, tried to relax, gone to bed that night, and possibly never woken up the next morning. But covid has us all on high alert, especially when it comes to breathing troubles. I NEVER thought I’d be thankful for it
Also after he got out of the hospital, he gave said papillon an extra special doggy treat for, “saving his life.”- faerytheft
“Similarly, if not for remote doctors and virtual visits, I would have let a potentially bad infection fester. I was too embarrassed for years to see a practitioner in person, and while the infection was very recent, I was dreading an appointment. And then, like angels heralding on high, I got an email from my insurance about scheduling remote consultations. I’ve now talked to more doctors this year on my own than ever before, and even made some progress with a therapist.” –cavepainted
“Playing board games with my teenaged kids. We got away from it as they got older. I still kick ass on Scrabble, but they smoke me on Backgammon. Ticket to Ride is a blast. Yahtzee too.
Edit: Well this certainly resonated with the community. To answer a few questions: We don’t play every night. A couple of times a week is where we’re at now. We have more modern games, but Backgammon and Yahtzee- especially Yahtzee- is the one they like to play the most. Monopoly, when played without ‘house rules’ is fun. It probably won’t last when things go back to normal, so I’m loving it while it lasts. Thanks for the awards!”-2leewhohot
“I have two teens (and a spouse). We really enjoy Spoons and Bullshit. Easy, fast paced card games. We also play blackjack as a family. We have a whole set of cards and chips. We keep a running tally of our chips on paper. My husband gets so mad because our daughter plays her gut and he plays by the “rules” and she is like a fake billionaire now and he’s always panhandling for fake money to get him back in the game. It’s a riot. Our son is always the dealer, our “casino” is named after him and it’s a good exercise in social skills and self control.” –dualsplit
“Cleaner beaches and ocean in Hawaii as millions of tourists stayed home. Of course the economy went to sh*t, but the Aloha ‘Āina prospered.”- QuackedUp99
“I’ve been asking, no, begging for WFH for 2 years prior, filling in medical reasons, etc. My boss agreed. HR & management basically ignored me. Like, dream on, never gonna happen.
Then Covid came and now all of a sudeen everyone can work from home.
They still send regular “covid emails” thanking us for our incredible adaptability in these difficult times, and they hope we will soon be able to return to “normal”.
Screw your normal…”chicken farm” blue light high strung open office microwawed lunch rush hour commute normal.
Why would anyone hope they can return to that sh**?! Do people really have it that bad at home?”-unikatniusername
“Yeah this past year has probably been the healthiest I’ve ever been. Haven’t ever had anything more than a minor headache, and that’s usually just due to dehydration or something mundane.”- SpicymeLLoN
“I went 2020 without a cold, where I’d definitely get at least two every year. However I succumbed last week. My daughter works in a supermarket and brought it home with her” – Moramug
“I’m missing a tooth fairly close to the front of my mouth and I don’t feel self conscious smiling in public when I’m wearing a mask. It’s a silly thing, but I kinda missed real smiles.
Thanks for the awards, guys! My most liked/commented comment is about my fucked up teeth. That’s… something. Lol.”- GreenOnionCrusader
“Me too! I lost 17 lbs and I just was discharged from therapy because my depression is officially, clinically at a zero. Go us!
To answer some questions:
Weight loss: I initially did a wellness challenge called 75HARD—a 75 day challenge that requires two workouts per day and sticking to a diet of your choice, among several other daily tasks. That kicked my butt into gear and got me into the habit of regularly exercising and eating well, so I’ve lost a few more lbs since I completed it in September. This also helped my mental health a lot, but not completely.
Mental health: I did Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which is a form of CBT that focuses on accepting your feelings and mindfully working through them, rather than avoiding them. My therapist had me fill out a questionnaire every time we met and based on my answers, he was able to calculate numbers on a depression scale. I can’t go into more detail about that, cause I don’t know, but I started at a 42/100 and last week was at a 3 on one scale. And on another I started out at a 7/10 and last week was at a 0. So I’m clinically not depressed I guess. Plus, the last several weeks I’ve come to him feeling great and having little to talk about, which meant it was time for me to be discharged.
Why was I discharged? My therapist works out of a medical facility, rather than private practice, so they go based on a medical model. It’s more of a “let’s give our patients the tools they need to cope and once they no longer NEED us, we’ll let them go,” so they can make room for more patients with acute needs, rather than a “we’ll see patients as long as they pay us.” I could’ve been referred to someone like that, but, like I said, I didn’t have much to talk about by the end.
What specifically helped me? Mindfulness exercises and writing down 5 good things about myself each day. My negative self talk was the biggest factor in my depression. I don’t do that anymore. I am a badass!”- yojothobodoflo
“Man I feel totally the opposite. I’ve gained weight and feel totally anxious and depressed. I think I was before but now feel like deffff am. Considering therapy but feel overwhelmed by the different options. Like there are so many different titles and qualifications and methods and the insurance is even more confusing than finding a primary care. Which I also need to do….”- Pficky
“No pressure to go somewhere on my days off. I don’t feel like I’m wasting time when I have days off and don’t spend them traveling or seeing people. I love staying at home and just hanging with my two cats. Sweat pants on, messy bun, junk food and games. I’m content with that.”- not-a-real_username
“Yes. I think I have learned to accept my homebody nature instead of feeling like I “should” be going out and doing things. There’s nothing wrong with making a home for yourself and then enjoying being there.”-notreallylucy
“My employer now knows for sure that working from home is completely doable and really doesn’t fuck up productivity.
I’ve also learned that I like going into the office once or twice a week just to break up the monotony of working from home all the time.”- AcrolloPeed
”For me personally, online learning. It just clicks with my brain somehow. I’ve gotten the best grades these past few semesters of my whole time in college. I’m off academic probation, I got an A in a class I failed twice before (required for my major), and I am able to do a second major I really wanted. I’m so much less stressed about exams and it feels so good to be able to show my parents grades I’m proud of. I don’t know how I would’ve been able to do this without online classes. I had a lot of trouble with attendance, and my bad memory, and now I’m able to go to class from my room and re-watch lectures and have some notes for exams. I felt so low my first few years of college and I finally feel good about myself as a student. It’s still hard to believe that it’s me getting these grades and graduation is scary but I’m so glad I get to do it.
Edit: thank you so much for all of the support and the really interesting discussions people are having! And a special thank you to the people who gave me awards, that’s very kind of you all!
I think the big takeaway here is that neither online nor in-person classes are objectively better, and that different learning formats work for different people. Hopefully colleges will be able to offer all or most classes in either format post-pandemic so that students can choose which version works for them. Good luck everyone, I believe in you!”-pastelkawaiibunny
“Seconding this. I can pause the recording to think through something I don’t understand, or work through a proof that clearly isn’t trivial despite the lecturer’s insistence so it won’t distract me for the rest of the lesson. The easy parts I can juat fast-forward through.”-Vampyricon
“You learned something important about yourself.. Several somethings, actually. You now know where and how and under what conditions you thrive.
The world has also learned several somethings too. “Out of the box” is no longer a metaphor. There are many ways to achieve. Remote employees can and will deliver. Embracing all this improves the bottom line!
Put these two things together: You now know what place you seek, and that place now EXISTS! Enjoy the finding of it, friend…”-JuliusVrooder