The relationship between a therapist and a client can be intense and special, but it always must be a professional one. When boundaries and lines are crossed, things can become problematic for both the counselor and the patient. To avoid this, therapists set clear boundaries, but it is nonetheless hard not to get attached to a counselor who is helping sort out the most intimate details of one's life. If you are suddenly faced with a temporary replacement, which is referred to as a psychiatry locum or a locum tenens psychiatrist, you may have a lot of conflicting feelings. Follow these tips to handle the situation in a way that best serves your needs.
Tip #1: Honesty Is Always the Best Policy Within a Counseling Session
For the locum tenens psychiatrist to be able to help you to the best of their ability, you need to be open and honest about how you are feeling. If you are upset or confused about the preferences of a locum, it's okay to state that. Psychiatrists are trained to deal with difficult feedback, so you don't have to worry about hurting their feelings. They have insights and understand that dealing with this significant change is likely to be difficult on some levels.
On that same note, if you are having a hard time opening up to someone new, it's okay to let them know that. The locum tenens psychiatrist is not likely to take anything you say personally, especially during this time of transition. If you are furious at the locum for being there when the therapist you want isn't, get that out, too.
Tip #2: Try to Keep an Open Mind About the New Psychiatrist
Some people try to keep a clear distance from the locum tenens psychiatrist out of a misguided sense of loyalty to their original therapist. However, you don't have to worry about not being loyal to your therapist if you do develop a great relationship with the substitute. You may still want to go back to your original counselor when they return, but you are not obligated to do so. Therapy is about you and doing what is best for you.
If you go into the office of the locum tenens psychiatrist with a lot of preconceived notions of how awful any replacement will be, you may find that it's a self-fulfilling process. It's hard to accept someone new if you have a closed mind. Instead, try to be open for the unique things that the locum tenens psychiatrist has to offer. You can still appreciate the value of your original therapist while giving the replacement a chance to help you.
Finally, keep in mind that a psychiatry locum typically is just standing in for the therapist for a designated period of time. It's okay to ask for answers, and the psychiatry locum should be able to provide the information you need to make the best decisions about how you should handle this new therapy experience.Share
12 April 2017
From the time I was born to the time I graduated high school, my parents were very overprotective of me and shielded me from all of the "bad" things in the world. When I decided to go to college out of state, they wanted me to stay closer to home, but gave into my wishes eventually. Once I got settled at college, I realized just how attached I was to my parents. I began to feel so homesick that I almost quit before the first semester ended. I decided to visit a counselor to see if she could help me get through the semester, and after just a couple of visits, I began actually enjoying my time away from home. I know there are others in tough situations like I was who need guidance, so I decided to start a blog to share my tips for coping with stressful situations.