Potential clients of online counselling
Potential online counselling clients can be devided broadly into two groups:
- People who for certain reasons, have limited opportunity to see a health professional in traditional face-to-face setting.
- People who for certain reasons, prefer contact via the Internet.
These two groups include:
- Persons who, because of the strong and negative emotions, including fear, shame and embarrassment related to their problem, find it extremely difficult to initiate the direct contact with the therapist, and in such cases the Internet is a very safe way to reducing the undesired exposure. This situation may be particularly beneficial in the area of sexual problems and difficulties, and any other issues that are more likely to trigger strong emotional reactions.
- Full-time parents staying at home with little children. More and more clients are full-time mums, who find it challenging to leave home for a few hours.
- People whose working hours make it impossible to see a therapist during regular office hours.
- Young people, because the Internet communication to them is as natural as traditional face-to-face contact.
- People with physical disabilities and people confined to bed.
- Hearing impaired people.
- The blind.
- Those living in the rural and remote areas, virtually with no access to counseling services.
- Individuals who are surrounded by other people strongly and negatively labeling seeking psychological help, and to them counseling over the Internet is a safe and much less socially (family, friends) confronting option.
- People who are personally acquainted with therapists available locally (the same town), and in such cases the Internet counselling allows avoiding the conflict of interest and secure the confidentiality.
- Imprisoned people, who may utilize online therapy as an additional opportunity while being in the rehabilitation program.
- The therapist should always assess first whether the person in question is qualified for an online counselling, or he/she should be refereed to the face-to-face professional health services.