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Daughters psychologist pushing personal opinions and ignoring severity of condition

Community Member

First time, first post. Apologies if this has been discussed before.

My 18yr old daughter has severe social anxiety. Diagnosed, and treatment for over 5 years. Her condition has had profound effect on her life already, including the necessity of home schooling. This has all been documented by her G.P. As she is now 18 there is the pressure of finding and maintaining a job. The very thought of this puts her in a spiral and causes physical reactions, vomiting being just one. 

She is very keen to get a job and gain some control over her anxiety. To help relieve the stress and anxiety surrounding the process we would like to try to apply for the DSP. We understand this would be temporary, the decision is reviewed by c/link every two years. Compounding the issue further is our location. We live in a very small rural town, the job opportunities are extremely limited and the added anxiety of needing to interact with people she knows is a stress she isn't handling well.

She regularly sees a psychologist, and takes her medication every day. She does not want to hide under her blankets for the rest of her life. 

Unfortunately her psychologist is more interested in pushing their own personal experiences and opinions than looking at the issue as a whole. The psychologist was out of home at 18, so according to them, so should my daughter. I understand confidentiality to a point, but I don't know if I can state the things my daughter has told me this "young persons health professional" has said to her. 

One thing I feel is important to share is, apparently, based on my daughters "looks" she should be out in the world. The psychologist has flat out refused to support an application for DSP. I don't know if this is the end of the road as far as that goes, or is there something/somewhere else I can go to try and advocate for my daughter. 

I am extremely concerned about repercussions if we are to pursue a second opinion.  If anyone is able to help point me in the right direction, I would appreciate it beyond words.

I suffer with mental health issues as well. Sadly this makes the whole thing so much more difficult. What may seem like the most obvious answer, won't occur to me. My brain works like a formula 1 car attacking mount panorama, it will go round and round and round until it crashes or wins the race. Right now, I see the obstacles coming at me at full speed and I can't, won't let my daughter down. 

3 Replies 3

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello, it's always sad when this happens and the psychologist should be more concerned about your daughter and not comparing them to her.

I have to go but your daughter can contact Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800 by phone or online 24/7 and these people are traned counsellors but dress up in casual clothes, so a real connection can be formed, please consider this and hope to hear back from you.


Life Member.

Eagle Ray
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi 1totallylost1


I’m really sorry you’re going through this stress along with your daughter and not getting the right kind of empathic support from the psychologist.


The DSP sounds like a logical way of approaching things in that it takes away that initial pressure to fulfill Centrelink requirements in applying for jobs. She can ease her way into work gradually. She could always start with voluntary work in whatever feels most approachable/safe for her.


It sounds to me the psychologist is not really attuned to what it’s really like from your daughter’s perspective. I think it would be ok to look for a second opinion and there is the option of telehealth which she may be doing already.


 I’m in a regional area and see a psychologist via telehealth. I had to go through several to find the right one but now feel well supported, so it can be worth finding someone sensitive to your daughter’s situation. I found mine researching online looking for people with an approach that aligned with my needs.


 I’m trying to return to work and I’m with a job agency that supports people with disabilities and medical conditions (including mental health). They are more flexible than the standard job agencies so Centrelink do not put the same pressure on. They can tailor more to the needs of the client. So that’s another possible option, but I do see the value of DSP as a way of really alleviating the level of anxiety.


GPs can also write medical certificates for Centrelink for up to 3 months so that may be another option. That would take some pressure off for a while.


 I’m dealing with similar matters at the moment so happy to discuss further if it helps.


Take care, both you and your daughter.

Community Member

I've seen many psychologists over the years. Your daughter's psychologist has let her personal life infect her professional judgement. I had a GP like this who would chastise me if my psychologist treatments weren't working. It turned out he was a counsellor, not a psychologist, and was later investigated by the department of health for fraud. It doesn't appear that your current psychologist has your daugthers best interest in mind. I would change.