We live in a “Band-Aid” culture. We are prescribed sometimes toxic medications, so society doesn’t have to hear about the ugly reality of our experiences. Our symptoms are covered and numbed, leaving the wounds to fester, undoubtedly infecting the next generation.
Talking to a trained professional is just sometimes necessary, and should be more socially promoted and accepted, outside of being in a crisis. If my knee hurts, I go to the doctor to get it looked at. If I don’t, shame on me for not paying attention to my body. If I start to feel “just not myself”, why does it not make sense to go have my head (figuratively speaking) looked at?
What if we had an annual mental health check up, like we do our annual physicals? Hasn’t enough been said to stress the importance of physical and mental well being for each and every human being? People talk about going to counseling with a sticky, defeated attitude. Why do we feel uncomfortable in conversation, if someone admits to going to therapy or suggests it to someone else? It’s because all of a sudden there is this stench that follows the moment, leaving an air of shame in the room. As if there is a neon arrow, pointing to the “damaged one” in the group.
Whether we have ever had the thought, “Maybe I should talk to someone about this?”, it would be beneficial to have someone ask how you are doing. To be put in a position you know going in that the focus is you, your mind, the circumstances around your life – that opportunity is a gold mind.
There are so many people walking around with Depressive Disorder in their medical charts. They take medication(s) for the depression, but have never seen a therapist. How does that even make sense? Can my primary care physician give me a check up and diagnose me with cancer, then give me a prescription to treat it within 15 to 30 minutes? No, she would hopefully see a need for further investigation in to my complaints and send me to a specialist. It just seems dangerous to me, to think of one’s mental issues/conditions/well-being any differently.
I have learned, through personal and professional experience, the positive change that can come from counseling. If we never even make it to the therapist’s office, how is one expected to combat the dysfunctions he lives and struggles with daily. We never will. Our culture, despite a respectable and popular movement towards living your best life, still does not support the idea. The shift in attitude towards those that need and seek professional help has not happened. It still has a “crazy” feel to it. The Band-Aids help close the wounds, but only covering them up, is what keeps us all in a constant state of anxiety.
We all have conflict that affect our lives. Whether untapped grooves from childhood or recent stressors contributing to a lack of clarity, everyone needs and deserves a professional to help her process this crazy ride we’re all on. Having someone to validate you, identify negative or irrational thoughts behind the feelings you are having, and/or bring attention to the whys of our behaviors, would contribute to a much healthier and happier society. Don’t ya think?
Did you know I’m co-editing an anthology? Trigger Points: An Abuse Survivor’s Experience of Parenting is now open for submission. Go to our Facebook page to learn more. Please do like, share and consider sharing your own story with us.