Parenthood: don’t sleep with your autistic nephew’s therapist

Smart title.

I don’t know if any of you watch the show Parenthood but I was hooked from the moment I first saw it which was early this fall.  I love how they portray everyone’s family and I can REALLY relate to the Max’s family, the boy with aspergers.

Last night’ episode they lost their amazing therapist.  In perfect Hollywood form, she slept with his uncle who was engaged.  Naughty.  That’s not what I wanna talk about.

Dealing with the loss of a therapist can be really hard to deal with.  We’ve lost 4 since the beginning, the three were only with us a few months so it wasn’t so hard.  There was one who was with us over a year and I seriously bawled my eyes out when she told me.

There’s this strange dance that therapists have to do, they must be professional but they also easily become part of your family.  You fall in love with them and they with you.  It’s hard because you’re paying them to be in your home and help your child, but they end up doing so much more than that.

I really do think long-term therapists are a key in a successful therapy program.  They get to know your child so well and your child trusts them.  I wonder how many non verbal kids have lost a long term therapist and have struggled with missing them or feeling abandoned by them.

Therapists have to come and go.  It isn’t an easy job at all, they don’t make much money and it isn’t always easy to find the hours.  They usually get into it at a young age and don’t do it for long.  It can be a heartbreaking job, going in to homes where the kids aren’t getting the care and attention they need.  So they often don’t last long.

I’m thankful to be working with a company who has long-term therapists.  They get paid more and have a loving boss.  Many of them have been doing it for years.  What’s hard about that, is that when you’re looking for a new therapist, the long-term people have full schedules and you have to try out new people.  You don’t know if they’ll like their job, you don’t know if they’re any good at it…you don’t know anything.

I’m having to do that right now.  After letting a therapist go last week because we found out they weren’t in it for a long time commitment, I was sent about five new resume’s to go through, interview, and hire.  I hate it.  The last 3 people I’ve hired came and went in the blink of an eye.  I’m gunna need some hard-core commitment from these people!!  But it’s something almost impossible to ask.

Watching Parenthood made me cry, as always, because I feel their pain.  Losing a good therapist is like losing a close friend.  I’d hire back the one I lost in a second.

Have you ever lost an important therapist?  How did you deal with it?


  1. Wow, this was compelling to read. I had some memories come up from my first experience with a therapist in kindergarten. I don’t remember it being a painful separation, but I could imagine through your writing. Good luck!

  2. I really like the TV show Parenthood. We have said good-bye to several beloved therapists already. It is hard, but I think it is good for my daughter to get used to the change and to learn to work with new people. All the best ones leave eventually. I try to have the attitude that nothing is permanent. The show did a good job of illustrating how important these changes can be.

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