As psychological anonymity being the major pulling factor more and more clients or mental health patients turn to online therapists for counseling or psychotherapy service. Dr. MG Lazarus speaks from his own experience.
“Converting the bedroom into therapy room isn’t the most attractive factor as I expected, it is the psychological anonymity, I am sure.” Dr. MG Lazarus who has been running online counseling and psychotherapy clinic since 1996 is convinced that patients prefer to keep their face masked for them to comfortably narrate their sensitive story. Clients feel less intimidated, non-embarrassed and uninhibited while taking online therapy, which is what the very first challenge of a therapist giving face to face session. Dr. Lazarus confirms, this challenge is easily bypassed using the online media.
The online counseling website gives two options to clients – facility to submit an offline message with client’s contact details, and a live window through which the client can converse with the therapist in real time without revealing own identity. Dr. Lazarus explained that more than 70% of his clients choose the second option as it is instant and anonymous. Mostly clients prefer to get an immediate answer to their distressing question. However, the anonymity factor undoubtedly plays a catalyst role on attracting more clients to online therapy as reiterated by Dr. Lazarus.
Psychologist Nils-Günter Schultze explains that psychological anonymity is the superior factor on attracting clients towards web portals. The other factors, according to him, are protection of self assurance, projection, willingness to change, and accessibility. Dr. Lazarus explains that psychological anonymity and accessibility are the two key factors that prompt clients to take online media for therapeutic needs. The veteran therapist indicated that the number of clients seeking counseling service has doubled since he introduced the live chat facility in his site since early 2007.