Home / Checklist for Military Members Seeking Therapy

Checklist for Military Members Seeking Therapy

The fundamental principle to put others before ourselves is within the fabric of every military community. However, the same selfless traits admired about our service members and veterans can contribute to the challenges that make it difficult for them to ask for help when they need it.

According to research published by RAND Corporation, service members who deploy to combat areas have a greater risk of mental health issues with 44 percent having difficulty adjusting to civilian life and nearly half experiencing strains in family life. Additionally, the families, especially caregivers, of service members and veterans, may face mental health risks of their own.

Addressing mental healthcare should always be a priority and never treated in the same regard as most military members treat minor physical wounds by ignoring or pushing it aside to deal with later. Help is available now. Seeking help does not make you weak.

The first step to healing is making the decision to seek help. Here are three practical ways military members and their loved ones can find the right therapy and maximize their mental health treatment.


Find Someone Who Fits You

Find a professional who has formal training in the area you are seeking help. From my perspective as a mental health provider, I have seen how it can be helpful for many military members to have a provider who comes from a military background.

Here are some questions to reflect on when choosing a mental health professional:

  • Do you prefer someone who is more active and verbally engaging, or would you like someone who is more reserved?
  • Does the provider have training in treating couples, families and/or children?
  • Do you want someone from your culture?
  • Does the provider have training in practices that research has demonstrated to be effective?


Ask Questions

Always remember it is your therapy, and you have the right to ask questions. The questions do not have to be excessive, but asking questions about the types of treatment or assessments you receive is important because they give the provider an opportunity to provide further clarification on a topic and provide direct feedback.

Mental health treatment works better when you take an active, informed role in the process. Be your own advocate and ask questions.


Be Patient

Lastly, but most importantly, remember that just because you go to therapy, huge changes rarely happen overnight. Healing can take time, but every baby step toward success is still progress. Work with your provider to develop a plan of action, and be sure to address any issues that may come up along the way.

When wrestling with issues from addiction to depression to PTSD and beyond, people tend to think that taking care of yourself “from the neck up” is purely prescriptive: medication, talk therapy and so on. However, staying proactive throughout the entire process is the key to experiencing real progress and healing. As one of our Centerstone’s Military Services clients put it, “Who you are can change! You can be the person you want to be.”


Jodie Robison, PhD, LPC-MHSP, NCC is the Executive Director of Centerstone’s Military Services. With more than 18 years of behavioral health and management experience, Robison oversees Centerstone’s military-related services, programming, operations, business development and fundraising activities. She is a military spouse, a military parent and has collaborated with numerous military related organizations throughout her professional career.

Related Posts

Cohen Military Family Clinic

1st Annual Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Centerstone Community Art Show

The clinic was transformed into an art gallery on August 10th in honor of our one-year anniversary. Thirty Veteran and Family member artists came together to share their talents with the community. The celebration featured pieces created in numerous different mediums from a variety of artistic expressions. Medal of Honor recipient Ryan Pitts, who advocates ...


Sun Tan City Supports Centerstone’s Military Services

Sun Tan City is partnering with Centerstone for a week of giving in support of Centerstone’s Military Services. All Sun Tan City locations in Kentucky, Indiana and Tennessee will be offering Spray Tan or Sunbed sessions for $5 from June 24-30, 2019. Centerstone’s Military Services will receive $1 from each visit. Everyone is invited to ...

Family Matters

A Salute to Military Children

Military children deserve our gratitude Gratitude for our nation’s veterans and active military members are rightfully common across our country. We hold in our hearts the exceptional nature of their bravery and service. Their sense of duty, honor and commitment is crucial to the freedom and security we enjoy as a nation. Less noticed, however, ...

Military Services

Centerstone’s Jodie Robison Joins American Counseling Association’s 2019-2020 Research and Knowledge Committee

Dr. Jodie Robison, Executive Director of Centerstone’s Military Services, has been selected to the 2019-2020 Research and Knowledge Committee of the American Counseling Association (ACA). Robison first joined Centerstone in 2007 as a behavioral health worker in Pediatric Integrated Care before establishing her own private behavioral health practice in 2012. Before she became executive director ...


More Than a Three-Day Weekend

For some people, Memorial Day is just another three-day weekend, the beginning of grilling season, the opening of community pools. It has become a day of great joy for many people. Most realize the day has something to do with honoring military, so veterans are often thanked for their service or even told “Happy Memorial ...