Psychotherapy via video chatting (a more complex way of saying “Skype”) has only recently entered the practice of therapists of various directions. My impression is that right now therapists and counsellors have a pretty ambiguous attitude towards it. On the one hand, this format of interaction was quick to spread, and only very few psychologists have never tried Skype sessions with their clients. On the other hand, there is little theoretical and practical material dedicated to this form of interaction. As a result we have a curious kind of situation – everybody works in Skype, but nobody talks about it.
Well, I do exaggerate a bit – there is a certain amount of research, methodology, and developments. But it is precisely because they are so scarce that this form of therapy is developing at an incredibly quick pace. All developments are modern, all concepts are current, and all ideas are bold. This is why I am so interested in working with clients on the other side of the screen.
The old-fashioned professional opinion on this matter would be something along the lines of “Do whatever you did before, exactly as you used to do it in your office, only online, via Skype”. But in this case online therapy is perceived as nothing better than a replacement for those who are unable to attend sessions in person. I’m afraid I entirely disagree with this position.
Online psychotherapy is a separate form of therapy. It may not suit some people, it may prove to be inefficient for others, but what often happens is the opposite.
Thinking about Skype from this perspective, a therapist begins to understand what to pay special attention to when diagnosing, and also the format’s strong points, how and when they ought to be exploited, and when more caution is advisable.
I usually suggest that many of my clients to give it a chance at least. Apart from gaining a new experience, they may benefit from such advantages of Skype counselling as a lower cost, saving time and travelling expenses, doing it from the comfort of their own home and being more mobile and flexible.
Should you have questions or just wish to understand if this format would suit you – please write to me! I will be happy to give you an open and honest answer.