Hey Guys, I wanted to give you a quick reminder—DON'T YOU DARE BE ASHAMED OF GOING TO THERAPY! There. I yelled it as loud as I could via a blog post. This mental health stigma can be a real b*tch. It can make us feel embarrassed if we need to get help from a professional. It can make us feel like we should hide the fact that we need help. And, it can make us feel downright ashamed. But, it shouldn't. I love going to therapy. It’s the best hour of my week.
Therapy is NOT a bad thing
Imagine that tomorrow morning when you wake up, you have a sore throat, stuffy nose, and sinus headache. And it doesn't go away for weeks. Would you eventually go to the doctor? Of course! You know that a doctor could help you and that there's a medicine that would allow you to start feeling better. What if you thought you were having a heart attack? Would you call for help right away? I bet you would. Why? Because you know you aren't going to just stop having a heart attack and be ok without help. So, why do we think it's different with our mental health?
Let's debunk some common therapy myths:
Myth #1 - Therapy is for "crazy" people
Therapy helps people with a wide range of mental health struggles including depression, social anxiety, and trauma. Would anyone question someone that's lived through war needing to go to therapy in order to process their experiences and learn how to handle their anxiety? No, and no one thinks they're "crazy" either. Therapy allows you to talk through your situation and find a solution with someone that is educated in knowing how to help you do just that. Therapy allows you to stop repeating bad patterns, grow and have an amazing life which you deserve.
Myth #2 - Therapy is for weak people
Bullying is for weak people. Therapy is for people that are strong enough to know that things could be better and should be different than what they are experiencing. Strong people are able to overcome the stigma and get the help they need to live a productive life. And I get it … sometimes at the beginning, you don’t want the help. The beginning of therapy for me was “well f*ck … I’m screwed up, and I need to pay $200 an hour to have someone fix me”. I quickly realized, I’m not screwed up, and I sure as hell don't need fixing – I have some health issues and I’m seeing a professional who can help me move past the past, learn the tools to having an amazing life which I want. When someone says 'They need fixing" that typically means something is broken. And you are not broken. Therapy is amazing. If you haven’t tried it – I highly recommend it. I said it earlier, it is the best 1 hour of my week.
Myth #3 - You can make it through on your own
We live in a world that promotes independence. But the truth is, we all need others. As children, we need adults that know how to support us and care for us. As students, we need teachers that can educate us on the things we don't know. And, as humans, we need doctors that can assist us in caring for our physical and mental health. There's nothing wrong with that—it's part of life.
The entire purpose of therapy is to help you live your life in a healthy productive way, heal the past so you stop repeating habits, and move forward in life. Please, don’t ever let anyone make you feel like there's something wrong with that! I’m very public about therapy and I’ve stopped being ashamed of it.