The continued growth of the elderly population in society has placed renewed focus on providing older adults with quality mental health care. The aging of the baby boomers in combination with research indicating that psychotherapy is effective with an older population highlights the need for those with expertise in counseling the elderly. Providing therapeutic services to an older adult population has not historically been considered an option, as age and developmental status were thought to be key determinants of psychological appropriateness. This negativistic view of counseling for the elderly appears rooted in the Freudian tradition, with the assumption that older adults were too rigid in their character structures for therapeutic change to occur. Newer theories have extended the idea of psychological mindedness into the later years of life, with counseling as a useful option for providing therapeutic support and intervention for those nearing the end of the life span.