Changing Attitudes Towards Psychotherapy and Counselling

Significant Changes in Attitudes Towards Psychotherapy

Attitudes towards psychotherapy and counselling have shifted significantly since 2004, a survey by the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) reports. Over these seven years there has been a marked increase in people’s openness to the benefits of seeking psychotherapy for support and of its social acceptability.

It appears that the stigma attached to asking for support and help from a mental health professional is beginning to fade as more and more people pursue help with dealing with their emotional problems. This willingness to talk is reflected in the statistic that one in five people have consulted a psychotherapist or counsellor whilst more than half the population knows someone who has. 82% of those surveyed thought that the world would be a better place if more people were in touch with their emotions, whilst 91% felt that it is now more acceptable to talk about emotional problems than it was in the past.

More encouragingly still, the study reveals that attitudes towards seeking help before a problem gets worse are stronger. 95% of those asked thought that “it is a good idea to seek counselling or psychotherapy for a problem before it gets out of hand”. 88% thought that “people might be happier if they took action to talk to a counsellor or psychotherapist about their problems”, whilst 83% thought it better to talk to someone rather than seek medication.

It is becoming more recognised that mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety are more common than previously thought. Therefore it is also encouraging that 94% of those surveyed thought it is now acceptable to engage in psychotherapy as opposed to just 67% in 2004.

This attitude change is also applying to couples and relationship psychotherapy and counselling where the percentage of couples seeking such help has risen from 52% in 2004 to 85% now.

84% of those asked said that they would be more likely to ask for help if they could be sure that the therapist was fully trained and a member of a recognised accrediting body. The therapists at The Cavendish Psychotherapy Practice, based in London on Harley Street, underwent five years of training and partake in continuous ongoing professional development. They have many years experience in both NHS and private settings and are all registered by the UKCP (United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapists) and members of BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy). 

One thought on “Changing Attitudes Towards Psychotherapy and Counselling”

  1. Dear Jessica!

    I really liked your writing about attitudes towards psychotherapy. I search the same subject in Hungary. Attitudes towards psychotherapy among hungarian peoples. My question would be if you have an available article about your study? It would be very helpful for my research. Thank you. Wishing all the best!

    Victoria Wittmann

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