According to the Collins Thesaurus, Professional means: Adept, competent, efficient, experienced, expert, practised, skilled, qualified, trained and specialist.
When relating this to the profession of psychologists, mentors, mediators and counsellors, I think two words are missing from the above definition: Open-minded and un-biased.
Professional counsellors need a qualification (which will include a certain amount of practical hours), an open mind and a desire to help people.
It is always great if the counsellor you choose has these qualities and also has lots of experience in their specialisation. Experience can come either from years of working in the field or from a personal perspective or both.
Sometimes people choose to seek advice from family members, work colleagues and church elders. Whilst these people may all be well-meaning in their advice, if they are not properly trained, they could do more damage.
This way, the counsellor will be able to see the bigger picture and give un-biased guidance. If you do not feel that the counsellor you have chosen is right for you, it is a good idea to look for someone that you feel can genuinely assist you and your family through your crisis.