It can be intimidating to
go to therapy for the first time — you have to navigate everything from how to choose your therapist to finding a provider that accepts your insurance. You might opt to go for teletherapy instead if you don’t want to add “figuring out how to get to and from an IRL therapist’s office every week during your hectic work life” to the list. You can explore and use one of the best online therapy apps from the comfort of your own home — with no hard pants in sight.
Many online therapy apps or online platforms, like
Therapy for QPOC, National Deaf Therapy, Pride Counseling, or Talkspace, will have you fill out an initial questionnaire and then match you with a therapist based on your needs. You can often set up your intake and start receiving treatment within days, whereas it can take much longer if you’re cold-calling or emailing therapists to see in-person. When you’re accessing online therapy through apps, insurance doesn’t always cover it — but you can often use your Employee Assistance Program ( EAP) to help offset costs. Some platforms might direct you to funds or scholarships that can help pay for therapy, like the National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network’s mental health fund for QTBIPOC.
Check out these nine online therapy platforms to get started.
Therapy for QPOC
In addition to offering a
directory to find queer therapists of color near you, Therapy for QPOC also offers direct services like free 15-minute initial consults and 60-minute sessions, ranging from $100 to $200 each. Through this service, you can access both individual therapy and polyamory-inclusive relationship therapy. While Therapy for QPOC is in-network for Blue Cross Blue Shield of GA/Anthem, it’s out-of-network for other providers — so make sure your insurance covers some out-of-network costs if you can’t pay out of pocket. There’s no app for this one, but you can access the services on your computer just fine. Open Path Psychotherapy Collective
Open Path Psychotherapy Collective is a non-profit that aims to provide more accessible therapy for people who are under- or uninsured. When you get a lifetime membership for $59, individual psychotherapy sessions with licensed mental health clinicians will run from $30-$60, with couples and family sessions ranging from $30-$80. Open Path doesn’t have an app, but you can access the platform — including teletherapy — entirely online. AYANA Therapy AYANA Therapy is a mental health platform that emphasizes providing teletherapy (including texting, phone calls, and video sessions) for marginalized communities — specifically for BIPOC, LGBTQ+ folks, people with mood disorders, PTSD, addiction, or relationship issues. You have the option to remain anonymous on the AYANA app, and you’ll be matched with a certified mental health professional based on a questionnaire when you join. You’ll be able to choose between a texting and phone call plan that’s $140 a month or $180 a month for a texting and video plan. You can download the AYANA app on iOS or Android. National Deaf Therapy
Therapy (and teletherapy) can be
inaccessible to people in the Deaf community, both in terms of ASL needs and issues of cultural competency. National Deaf Therapy is meant to bridge that gap. Once you sign up, you can schedule a free consultation to be matched with a Deaf therapist who’s licensed to practice teletherapy in your state. Teletherapy accessed through National Deaf Therapy is in-network with Cigna, and can work with out-of-network insurances. There are also payment plans, sliding scale options of $85 to $150 per session, and you can use EAP, victim compensation, or vocational rehabilitation vouchers to access care. You won’t need an app for this service, just your computer. Pride Counseling
If you’re looking for licensed mental health professionals that are culturally sensitive to LGBTQ+ issues,
Pride Counseling will match you with a therapist for live texting, phone, and/or video sessions. The services offered through Pride Counseling aren’t typically covered by insurance, and costs run between $80 and $100 per week, billed monthly. The app is available on both iOS and Android. Talkspace
If you’ve been browsing the wide world of online therapy apps, it’s likely that you’ve run into this one.
Talkspace, a teletherapy platform that offers texting, phone, and video services from licensed providers, has specific therapy for individuals, couples, and teens. It also offers access to psychiatrists. (Psychiatrists can prescribe medication, while therapists cannot.) A single video session costs $65, and monthly plans — which include texting and a variety of phone and video options — run between $260/month and $396/month. Talkspace accepts insurance from Cigna and a variety of school and employer-based programs like Justworks. If you need additional help paying for services, Talkspace’s partnership with The Loveland Foundation helps fund therapy for Black women and girls. You can download the app on iOS and Android. BetterHelp BetterHelp offers access to licensed therapists that offer a variety of services. You can text, set up phone or video sessions, or set up live chat sessions with a therapist in case you’re not up for physical talking. The platform also offers a series of digital worksheets that can support you between sessions. Costs range from $80-$100 per week, with your card charged once a month, though BetterHelp’s services aren’t typically covered by insurance. You can download BetterHelp for iOS or Android. MDLIVE
If you need teletherapy that can help with medication management,
MDLIVE offers online services with licensed psychiatrists. You'll sign up, select your own provider from their network, and can typically schedule an appointment within a few days, which is much faster than many outside waiting periods for psychiatrists. It will cost $284 for your first appointment, and $108 for follow-ups. MDLIVE accepts insurance from providers like Cigna, Humana, and Blue Cross, Blue Shield. You can download the app on iOS or Android.