Talkspace Online Therapy Reviews 2022
Talkspace Subscription Plans
Talkspace: Messaging Therapy
- Most affordable plan
- Unlimited text, video, and audio messaging
Talkspace: Live Therapy
- Includes four 45-minute live sessions per month
- Live sessions can be conducted through text, audio, or video with the therapist
Talkspace: Live + Messaging Therapy
- Most comprehensive plan
- Unlimited messaging therapy with four live 45-minute sessions per month
Use Talkspace promo code "EVERYDAYTS" for $100 off your first month.
In 2012, Roni and Oren Frank founded Talkspace, an online counseling platform committed to making therapy more accessible, affordable, and convenient for all. Over the years, the platform has grown from a small start-up offering live group therapy sessions into a megabusiness that allows users to send text, video, or voice messages to their therapist 24/7.
We took a deep dive into this unique platform that offers both counseling and psychiatry services to more than one million people. This Talkspace review goes over the pros and cons, enrollment process, program options, costs, and more to give users everything they’ll need to know before deciding whether Talkspace is right for them.
Pros and Cons of Talkspace Therapy
- Extensive network of counselors
- Offers therapy for couples, teens, and individuals
- Psychiatric services available for adults
- New users get matched with three therapists and choose their best fit
- Detailed price sheet and explanation of therapy process
- Changing therapists is a simple process
- Communication available via text, audio, and video messaging, with some plans offering live therapy sessions
- Counseling not available for kids age 12 or younger
- Not all plans offer live video sessions
- Counselors cannot diagnose mental health conditions
- Better suited for mild cases of anxiety or depression
- Not covered by Medicare or Medicaid
How Does Talkspace Therapy Work?
Talkspace is a comprehensive online counseling platform that connects teens and adults with a licensed, experienced therapist for virtual therapy sessions. Single-session psychiatry visits are also available. Users can access Talkspace through a computer or mobile device with the Talkspace app, which offers users the convenience of scheduling appointments and messaging on their own time.
The Messaging Therapy subscription cost includes unlimited messaging via text, audio, or video. Live Therapy includes four 45-minute live sessions that can be conducted via text, audio call, or video call. The Live + Messaging Therapy plan combines unlimited messaging with four live therapy sessions. In general, live video, chat, or phone sessions last about 30 to 50 minutes, depending on the therapist’s availability. Talkspace therapists are available five days a week.
Response time from counselors is similar to other platforms. In general, users can expect a response from their counselor within four to six hours of sending a message. This policy is in effect twice a day, five days a week and does not include live sessions.
Talkspace also has a guaranteed response time. When users click on the “reply-by” button in the chat room, they will get an update with the time period in which their provider is expected to respond. This eliminates having to repeatedly check for emails and notifications. Talkspace guarantees daily responses five days a week.
Talkspace Plan Options
- Messaging Therapy?Unlimited text, video, and audio messaging
- Live Therapy?Four live 45-minute sessions per month
- Live Plus Messaging Therapy Ultimate?Unlimited text, video, and audio messaging, plus four live 45-minute sessions per month
- Couples Therapy?Unlimited text, video, and audio messaging, plus four live 30-minute sessions per month, including both members of the couple
- Teens Therapy?Unlimited text, video, and audio messaging for teens ages 13 to 17
- Talkspace Psychiatry Session-based program for medication management. The psychiatrist will discuss mental health issues, but users will need to subscribe to one of the monthly plans if they’re looking for ongoing mental health counseling.
What Is the Enrollment Process?
Reviewers note that getting started with Talkspace is easy. The first step is to create an account. Once that’s complete, users will move to a private chat room to communicate with a licensed mental health professional who will ask a series of questions to help match them with the right counselor. During the consultation, therapists will also explain how Talkspace works and what users can expect from each plan. Since this is a live session, users can ask as many questions as they want.
After the consultation, Talkspace will match users with several therapists. Users then choose a therapist from the list or ask for a different match. The ability to select from a list of therapists is one of the perks of Talkspace. It can take anywhere from a few hours to two days to get matched with a counselor.
Once users are matched, they can begin communicating with their therapist in a private therapy room, open 24/7. Users can send text, video, or voice messages to their therapist at their convenience in this space. But the therapist is not required to respond immediately, so users will have to wait for a response.
Types of Counseling Offered Through Talkspace
Talkspace therapists use a variety of counseling methods to treat mental health issues. Some of the more common treatment modalities include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Client-centered therapy
- Dialectical behavioral therapy
- Existential therapy
- Interpersonal psychotherapy
- Mindfulness therapy
- Trauma-focused therapy
- Psychodynamic therapy
- Family therapy
Talkspace will match users with a therapist based on their individual needs. Talkspace counselors have a wide range of specialties, including:
Expertise of Counselors
Talkspace therapists are required to possess one or more of the following credentials: licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT), licensed professional clinical counselor (LPCC), or a PhD in clinical psychology. All therapists have at least 3,000 hours of clinical experience.
Plus, they are authorized to work with clients only in the state where they are licensed.
Talkspace Prices and Payment Options
Talkspace therapy has a variety of subscription plans, ranging in price from $276 to $516 per month. The Talkspace psychiatry option is not a subscription-based plan. Instead, users pay per session. It’s important to note that Talkspace offers “approximate pricing,” since the cost you pay will depend upon your location and the availability of therapists in your state. Although the therapy takes place virtually, online therapists need to be licensed in your state in order to provide care.
The price you pay will also depend on whether you plan on using insurance. Talkspace partners with health plans across the United States. You’ll be asked to enter your insurance information when you sign up in order to determine insurance eligibility.
Users can pay monthly, quarterly, or biannually. The quarterly and biannual plans lower the monthly rate, as does insurance.
- Messaging Therapy $276 per month, $744 per quarter, or $,1320 biannually
- Live Therapy $396 per month, $1,068 per quarter, or $1,896 biannually
- Live Messaging + Therapy $516 per month, $1,392 quarterly, or $2,472 biannually
- Couples Therapy?$436 per month for both people or $1,188 per quarter
- Teens Therapy?Teenagers ages 13 to 17 have access to the Messaging, Live, and Live plus Messaging Therapy plans, with parent or guardian consent
- Talkspace Psychiatry?$249 for the initial evaluation and $125 for follow-up sessions
Talkspace does not require a long-term contract, and users can cancel their subscriptions at any time through their account settings.
That said, if users cancel before their monthly plan expires, they will lose the remaining time that they’ve already paid for. Talkspace does not provide refunds.
Use Talkspace promo code "EVERYDAYTS" for $100 off your first month.
Talkspace Medication Management
Talkspace offers prescription medications through its Talkspace Psychiatry plan. Users complete an initial assessment and are then matched with a board-certified psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner licensed in their state who can prescribe mental health medication. The initial evaluation with a Talkspace psychiatrist is done over a live video session and costs $249. All follow-up appointments are scheduled directly with the prescriber and cost $125 per appointment. You will work with your provider to determine the number and frequency of follow-up appointments. Users can pick up prescriptions from their local pharmacy or have them delivered to their home. Talkspace psychiatrists can prescribe medications for mental health conditions related to depression and anxiety.
Customer Service and Satisfaction
Apple’s App Store lists hundreds of reviews for the Talkspace app. It gives Talkspace a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars based on 6,590 ratings. Despite the high overall rating, most of the recent reviews give the service a low rating. The Talkspace website shares more positive reviews and testimonials from customers.
Talkspace online therapy has a B rating with the BBB. However, the customer rating is considerably lower — at 1.08 out of 5 stars based on 75 customer reviews. It had 470 total complaints in the last three years, and of those, 238 were closed in the last 12 months. The majority of the complaints reference problems with charges, billing, cancellation, and counselor no-shows. Customers also describe difficulty reaching anyone through phone or live chat to discuss the issues. Others say they’ve left multiple messages that have gone unanswered. Several people mentioned not being able to schedule appointments, or leaving messages for a counselor and not hearing back for days.
Trustpilot, another online review site, gives Talkspace 1.3 out of 5 stars (based on 84 reviews). Like the BBB reviews, most of these refer to poor communication, nonexistent customer service, and difficulty connecting with a therapist.
Talkspace Customer Reviews
“Talkspace is the perfect app for someone like me, who doesn’t stay in one place for very long due to work demands. Prior to using this app, I relied on in-person therapy, and halted that due to my constant travel. But this app has truly changed my life, making it easier than ever to have the therapy I need on my schedule. There are a few slight drawbacks to be aware of, however. With the full package, you are guaranteed a live video chat once a week. I was not aware that each session was only 30 minutes long until my first session. It also is not a great app if you would like to have therapy at the same time every week. From my experience, it seems that the therapists use their Talkspace clients as “fill-ins” when their in-person clients cancel. This can make it difficult for someone like me who prefers routine. In the end, this app is a true miracle for those that can’t be in the same geographical location every week. My therapist has been really great, better than any of the in-person therapists I’ve had in the past. She responds to me every weekday, and encourages me to check in with her throughout the week.”
— SILVIUS (REVIEW FROM THE APPLE APP STORE)
“Their response time if you are having technical issues is too long. I signed up and my insurance wasn’t going through and it took 1 week of emailing back and forth before I finally got my EAP sessions. Then my free intro meeting counted as an EAP session and they wouldn’t fix it. If you need therapy, this is not the place. Honestly, it turned me off to therapy, which is the exact opposite of what this world needs. I am fortunate they never got money out of me.”
— STEPHANIE L. (REVIEW FROM BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU)
“I love my therapist! Very helpful. I am not happy with customer service as there is no phone number to contact a person. There are account issues I need resolved and can get no satisfaction via email. If I can find my therapist on a different platform I will move ... simply due to thick-headed customer service. Thank you.”
— LISA M. (REVIEW FROM BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU)
To give an in-depth Talkspace review, we first examined its website and app to see how easy it was to sign up for the service. In general, both tools make it easy to communicate with a therapist via chat, video, or voice note. Since prices vary by location and therapist availability in your state, figuring out your expected cost can be confusing if you don’t provide your location details up front. The good news is that there is no contract with their subscription-based model, and users can cancel anytime.
Next, we considered the sign-up process and counselor matching. You see three different options when being matched with a therapist, and changing therapists is easy. Talkspace requires all of the mental health professionals on its platform to have a LCSW, LMFT, LPCC, or PhD in clinical psychology; licensing in their practicing state; and at least 3,000 hours of clinical experience.
We also evaluated counselor availability, session types, and cost. Talkspace does not accept Medicare or Medicaid, but users can save significantly if they prepay for a quarterly or biannual plan. All of these things — including an informative website, sign-up process, counselor matching and experience, pricing, session types, and counselor availability — factored into our Talkspace review. Read more about our online therapy review process and editorial standards.
Why You Can Trust Us
We independently investigate and recommend products and services we believe will enrich the lives of our readers and meet their specific needs. We’ve spent many hours carrying out in-depth research on the online therapy market. You can trust our review because we did the legwork for you in these specific ways:
- Engaged in ongoing independent research
- Mystery shopped each of the brands
- Contacted brands’ customer service teams to ask questions and gauge responsiveness
- Became customers of online therapy providers ourselves
- Reviewed academic research into the efficacy of online therapy versus in-person therapy
- Read hundreds of verified customer reviews from trusted third parties such as Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Trustpilot
The Bottom Line
Talkspace may be an excellent option for those seeking the convenience of unlimited messaging, scheduled live sessions, or a variety of the two. It may also be a good option for those who want to use their insurance benefits for online therapy. The messaging option is also great for those who want to talk to their therapist outside of a scheduled session, or who may not feel comfortable communicating in a video setting. The profile of each therapist on Talkspace features a brief introduction, availability, and treatment history, which includes their therapeutic approach, focus areas, years in practice, and time working with Talkspace, so you can identify who will likely be the best fit for your needs. Talkspace has low BBB and Trustpilot review scores, with customers citing issues around long waits to hear from a therapist and negative experiences with individual therapists.
In Emergency Situations
If you are in crisis, waiting for an online therapy appointment may not be safe. In case of an emergency, call 911. This includes plans to harm yourself or others. If you’re having suicidal thoughts, you can call the?National Suicide Prevention Lifeline?at 800-273-8255. Help is available 24/7.
You can also reach out to the?Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline?at 800-662-HELP (4357). The SAMHSA helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-days-a-year treatment referral and information service for individuals facing mental health or substance abuse disorders.