PrideCounseling.com is part of the Betterhelp therapy group, which is owned by Teladoc (NYSE: TDOC), a Telemedicine leader in the United States. Betterhelp and all its subsidiaries are highly regulated and HIPAA compliant. They are well known for having one of the best customer service operations in the industry, as well as an excellent vetting process for new therapists applying to work on the platform.
|U.S Based Company||Yes|
|Number of Licensed Therapists||Unknown|
|Therapy Modes||Text, Audio and Video|
|Available Treatments||Private Therapy|
|Average Price||$60 – $80 Per Week|
|Sign Up Time||Few Minutes|
|Customer Reviews||96% positive|
|Our Editorial Rating||4.5 Stars|
|Current Promotion||10% Discount On The First Month|
Signing up is very easy and simple. First, you need to choose a nickname to use on the site, fill in your email and select a password. You’ll then get a verification email, and once you click that you are good to go and can login and start using Pride Counseling. You will then have to fill a short questionnaire where you’ll be asked about the issues you are currently facing, as well as your preferred therapist type (gender, sexual orientation, age and so on).
As soon as this is done, you’ll be prompted to pay for your subscription. This is something we really don’t like and view as a somewhat predatory behavior. No person should be asked to pay for any service, let alone mental health treatment, without first getting a chance to view the platform and know who their therapist is.
If you are OK with paying straight away, you can also click the link to check if you are eligible for financial aid or not. If you prefer to first see who your match is, and activate the free trial option, read our pro tip section right below this one. We don’t like the fact they make it so hard to do so, but in the end it is there – you have the option to take things slowly and see what you get before paying anything.
Once payment is made, you will be automatically matched with a therapist based on the answers you gave earlier. You can change your counselor at any given time. If you are happy with the match, a secure chat room will be opened for you and your therapist. There, you will be able to chat 24/7 and this is also where the weekly live session is held.
Before you begin therapy, you’ll be asked to provide additional personal details for emergency situations – this is standard and meant to keep you safe. Your therapist will not have access to any of these – so you can remain completely anonymous during therapy itself.
As mentioned, there is an option to activate the 7 days free trial, during which you get to see the therapist you are matched with and can replace them if you don’t feel comfortable with them. Your potential therapist will send you a welcome message in your private chat room and you can chat with them a bit to see if there’s chemistry or not. You can also view their profile to get a better idea of what type of person they are.
In order to activate the free trial period, you need to do the following:
1. Click the ‘I can’t afford therapy’ link below the payment screen.
2. Click ‘Still not ready’ on the popup screen that follows (don’t check for financial aid eligibility yet).
3. When asked why you don’t want therapy, choose the last option “I don’t need help at the moment”.
4. You will then be offered a 7 days free trial.
After we took the steps above, Pride Counseling took us back to the payment screen and asked for our payment info in order to start the free trial. They explain they want to see you take this trial seriously since their counselors will put in serious time and effort into helping you during this period. In reality, the reason they want your payment details is more likely because the subscription automatically renews after the week is gone – and then you’ll be billed the full price each month.
At this point we closed the site and were planning to contact support to complain and ask for a better solution. However, the next time we opened it (just a few minutes later) – we were already matched with a therapist and were able to talk to them. So while we do feel the business module is overly aggressive – in the end we were able to get the week-long trial period and already see who our potential match was.
Pride Counseling only gives you one plan to choose from. It costs between $60 and $80 per week which is charged on a monthly basis. The price is determined by the time period you choose to pay for in advance. In return, you get access to unlimited chat and text messaging with your therapist and a weekly live session.
The site also offers you to apply for financial aid. You can do so before making the first payment by filling out a short survey. The system will automatically let you know if you are eligible and for how much within a few minutes. Based on the information you provide, you enjoy up to 40% off on your plan – so it is definitely worth a try.
Pride Counseling doesn’t currently work with any insurance provider. You can contact your provider directly to check if you can get any type of copay for virtual therapy. If applicable, Pride Counseling will provide all necessary documents so you can enjoy all relevant benefits.
Pride Counseling is owned by Betterhelp, which has the best vetting process for new therapists who apply to any of their platforms. All therapists are licensed with a certificate from their state’s board, a minimum of a Masters degree and at least 2000 hours of clinical experience. They are also provided with training for online based therapy.
Our experiences with various psychologists on the platform were always great, and so were most of the user reviews we found online. If you go to each therapist’s profile, you will see that dealing with LGBTQ+ issues is usually what they are most experienced with. That being said, We also found a good portion of counselors who deal with more general stuff such as:
There’s no psychiatric therapy on Pride Counseling, or any treatments for minors. Therapists are unable to prescribe any medication, and don’t give out a letter of recommendation for HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy).
All throughout this Pride Counseling review we tried our best to objectively describe what we like or don’t about the platform. Being the only therapy site which is completely dedicated to the LGBTQ+ community is already a big plus just on its own, but also makes it much harder to compare Pride Counseling with other therapy platforms.
Since comparing Pride Counseling with Betterhelp doesn’t make much sense (they share the same software, price, therapists and even customer service) – we instead compare it to the other large therapy platforms that have an LGBTQ+ therapy option in them such as Talkspace or Amwell.
When compared to these, we ultimately feel Pride Counseling has the upper hand and is the best gay friendly therapy site. It doesn’t have so much to do with price or quality of therapy (which is excellent on all of the platforms mentioned here) – but more with the effect of getting help in a place which is entirely dedicated to you and your community. We feel this makes therapy much more effective and also saves you a lot of time, since you’ll always be dealing with therapists who know exactly what you are dealing with and how to help you in the best way possible.
Still, we encourage you to read more online therapy reviews first, or our ultimate guide for LGBTQ+ therapy. In the end, it’s all a matter of where you will feel the most comfortable based on your priorities. While we do feel Pride Counseling is the best overall, each therapy site works a little bit differently and has its own pros and cons – so ultimately the decision is entirely up to you.
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