The (real) Cost of Online Therapy
Life is a journey, and there are multiple times throughout our lives that we may find ourselves needing a bit of support, guidance, and help. There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, there is strength in reaching out for help. Life is difficult enough, why add extra pressure and stress when it can be halved by simply sharing it with someone? Sometimes we punish ourselves even further by refusing to accept that we need an outsider’s perspective.
So, you have acknowledged that you need guidance. You have accepted that you need help. That is huge! But now what? Who do you book with? What help do you seek? But, more to the point, what do you do if you can’t afford it? Paying for therapy or mental health services can be a major challenge for many people and understanding the cost of therapy and the cost of online therapy can be confusing.
Is online therapy cheaper?
The field of online therapy has been growing for a number of years and continues to prove to be as effective as face-to-face therapy but it is also proving to be more affordable in most cases.
Much like face-to-face or traditional therapy, the cost of online counselling varies from specialist to specialist. Connectable Life has therapy that starts at $8 (+- R120). You can select a price bracket and choose a specialist within your price range and affordability.
Online therapy can be generally cheaper than in-person therapy due to a wider range of specialist choice (and therefore wider range of cost choice) as well as the money saved on travel expenses, time off work and not to mention the TIME saved. Since it’s all done online, flexibility, accessibility and ease are added benefits.
If you are seeking an affordable option, and your insurance or medical aid won’t cover in-person therapy, you can’t beat online therapy. If you don’t have medical aid, it may also mean you have to get on a waitlist in a government facility and possibly see someone designated and not chosen by you. Online therapy is an affordable option for those living in remote areas and expensive cities.
What can I do if I can’t afford therapy?
Psychology Today puts this beautifully, 7 Tips for Dealing with Life if You Can’t Afford A Therapist | Psychology Today South Africa “It’s a tough question to ask in a vacuum, because many individual therapy sessions aren’t particularly impactful in and of themselves. Therapy is a cumulative process, and we can’t predict when growth will come. Most people don’t weigh the benefits of therapy as a result of the ongoing process. Instead, they cling to the cost of a single session and wonder what new Lululemon pants they could have bought instead.”
Very often people do have the money for therapy, but they are using their budget on things that seem more important or valuable at the time. Going for one session will never give you the healing and long-term happiness you are looking for; so you may decide that that money is better spent elsewhere. Do yourself (and your loved ones) a favour and stick to AT LEAST three sessions and we can guarantee you that the cost will FAR outweigh the short-term release you get from spending money on things rather than yourself. Prioritize your long-term health and happiness over short-term perceived joy. Make (your) mental health a priority.
Having said this, there are people that struggle to meet their basic needs of food and shelter, let alone afford therapy of any shape, form or kind. So, then what?
Making other choices
If you can’t afford therapy or online counselling, you may reach out to an organization that offers free therapy. It is also worth asking your insurance or medical aid if they have any mental health benefits. Online therapy options are slowly being covered by more and more medical aids- so be sure to check this with your provider and plan (and then your therapist).
You may also try reading self-help books or attending support groups.
Check out podcasts and videos: there is so much material out there that may help you deal with your struggles.
You may also ask your workplace if they have any employee wellness options in place; this normally includes mental health counselling.
Try meditating and/or mindfulness exercises. Meditation can produce a deep state of relaxation and a tranquil mind.
Sometimes, after all of this, we still need the help and guidance of a therapist. If none of the ‘free’ options are working for you, you may try revaluating some expenses and shuffle things around so that you can get the help you need and deserve. Sometimes it is less about not having money to afford therapy and more about assessing poor spending habits. Take a look at your spending to see if budgeting or cutting back can allow you to afford low-cost therapy.
Is there any free online therapy?
Although Connectable Life does not have any free therapy available; there are many affordable specialists available. With the freedom of having a wide range of specialists to choose from, comes the freedom of choosing your budget.
There are many different therapy practices which are all great options to help your wellbeing. With several different options available, online counselling with Connectable Life is exceptionally affordable and a cost-effective option. Depending on the therapy and specialist you choose and how many sessions you sign up for, there are ways to make it work for your budget. Sometimes people look at a therapist’s hourly rates and immediately assume they can’t afford professional help. So they stop there. But you do have various helpful options that are more affordable. Our online counsellors and specialists provide affordable therapy options that support your happiness, health and wellness. Each type of therapy practice helps you grow as a person.
We want to make online counselling easy, accessible, safe and affordable. You can browse the therapist’s profiles and find one who works for your needs and fits in with your budget. This may involve some time and effort, but the specialists’ videos make this process a bit more fun and engaging and you will get the therapy you need at a price you can afford.
If you are unable to afford paying anything for therapy, please do not let this stop you from receiving the help you need and deserve. Free counselling can be found at most churches as well as organisations, such as LifeLine, SADAG, Revive, Hope House and IThemba.
Therapy is an investment
At the end of the day, our health and happiness is worth more than a price tag and we should not let it deter us from getting the help we need, want and deserve. Ultimately, getting the help we need sooner will save a lot of money in the long run. Therapy is an investment… in you, your life, your family, your happiness, your health, your future. Yes, it might seem expensive, but you are worth it. The world is full of kind people ready to help and there is always a way; we just have to want it enough.