When you imagine a relationship between a therapist and their patient, you probably think of something calm and collected, understanding and encouraging – and chances are, most relationships are like that.
In every profession, though, there are people who really don’t belong in the field. Here are 13 therapists who said truly terrible things to the people they were supposed to be helping.
13. The sound I just made.
“I was sexually abused by a family member and ran away to my then-boyfriend’s house, which was a safe place for me.
My therapist said, ‘Why do you think he did it? Are you sure you didn’t just imagine it, because I see no reason why he would have done that.
Maybe you wanted to believe that so you could run away with your boyfriend.'”
12. I can’t pick a worst thing.
“A therapist told me to stop talking about my eating disorder; yelled at me for self-diagnosing when I said, ‘I notice I’m having symptoms that sound like this’; and told me that if I dressed ‘normally,’ I wouldn’t have anxiety about school.”
11. Oh, this is just awful.
“During the pandemic, we were obviously meeting via Zoom. She thought the call had ended, and I heard her say, ‘Jesus Christ, she’s fucking exhausting.’ I immediately texted her to call her out; she started and stopped typing a few times before asking to speak to me after she finished with the rest of her appointments.
I had really liked her, so I was torn. I told her I would reach out when I was ready, but I wasn’t able to get past it, and my therapy came to an abrupt end. It was already hard opening up to someone — after that, I was completely soured.”
10. That would terrify a grown adult.
“In high school, I talked about how my PTSD was affecting my sleep, and said that every night, I saw shadowy figures in my room.
My religious therapist (whom my parents picked out) said, ‘OH! Those aren’t in your imagination, those monsters are real! They’re demons! You have to pray really hard and bless your house for them to go away.’
Shockingly, that didn’t work, and being told that made me feel more afraid.”
9. I would have reported that person.
“That my being groomed for abuse was something I willingly participated in because I liked setting the ‘rules of the game’ and then breaking them. First off, the person being groomed has very little control over anything. Second, WHAT?! If I ‘enjoyed’ it so much, why am I here in therapy?”
8. Pat the parents on the back.
“When I was a teenager and dealing with trauma from my childhood, I was very angry and very clearly needed help.
A therapist told my parents right in front of me that I was ‘too bitter and hostile to be helped.’
Thank goodness my parents never took me back to him. I’m a lot better off now.”
7. These dinosaurs need to retire.
“An old therapist once told me, ‘You’re too young to be feeling these things; they’re all fake.
Have you started your period yet? Did these things happen on your period?’
No, the self-harm and suicide attempts didn’t happen on my period.”
6. Not an actual plan.
“In my mid-twenties, I went to see a therapist for the first time because I was struggling with anxiety.
The therapist asked out of the blue if I had ever had sex, and I told him I hadn’t (I’m asexual, but I didn’t know it at the time).
He suggested that I just needed to get laid because it was a great stress reliever and would help me ‘loosen up.'”
5. No she did not.
“I was telling my therapist about the reasoning behind my parents’ divorce (which was very scarring for me, and I had never told anyone about it before), and she said, ‘Unfortunately, our session is coming to an end, but I wanna book you in for another as soon as possible because this is a very entertaining story.’
I’m glad she found my suffering entertaining.”
4. That doesn’t sound right.
“The first-ever therapist I went to was an older male. He began our first session by asking questions about my experiences and things my siblings had been through.
One of the things I disclosed to him was that my sister was raped when she was a teenager. During our next session a week later, he was reading from his notes and said, ‘I see you were raped at 16,’ and before waiting for me to correct this *massive* piece of incorrect information, he went on to say, ‘While you were being raped, Jesus was there being raped with you.’
3. I hope they’re not in anyone’s life.
“My adopted children have significant disabilities, some stemming from their biological mom’s drug and alcohol addictions during pregnancy. Instead of being sympathetic to the bio mom, my kids, and me, my therapist had the audacity to say, ‘Well, at least they aren’t really yours.’ I was stunned.
Seven years later, my kids and I are doing great, and the therapist is no longer in my life.”
2. That’s not how this works.
“I told my therapist that I’d been struggling with bulimia. She said, and I quote, ‘Do you realize how much you need to be eating to throw up and still look like that?’ Yeah…no…”
1. God doesn’t work here.
“I was 14 years old, and it was the first time I’d ever seen a therapist.
I told her about my brother’s suicide, and she told me that ‘suicide is just a slap in God’s face.'”
It honestly takes a lot to surprise me these days, but I am appalled.
If anything like this has ever happened to you, please share your story down in the comments.