I have been, and continue to be, very open about my experiences with depression and anxiety.
Depression and anxiety are illnesses that I will most likely deal with for the rest of my life.
But there is one thing that I wasn’t doing that I should have done a long time ago when it came to coping with my depression and anxiety.
I wasn’t going to therapy.
I have been to therapy before, but it was always one of those things that I thought of as something that was nice to do, but not necessary. I would go to a few visits, then ghost my therapist like a bad date because other things in life took precedence.
Then I started my job at RiverValley. We are a Community Mental Health Center. We offer therapy, inpatient and outpatient substance abuse programs, a psychiatric children’s hospital, etc.
I am in charge of the social media and communications for RiverValley and started reading and posting about the importance of seeking therapy. Not just when times are bad, but when things are good, too. Because we don’t want to slip back into our old thought patterns.
I started to feel like a bit of hypocrite. Here I was discussing my anxiety and depression on my blog and I wasn’t going to a therapist to seek the additional help I really needed. Because I honestly didn’t think it was all that important.
Yes, you can take medicine and focus on the positive in life and eat a balanced diet and exercise, but seeing a therapist lets you get all of that – I’ll call it shit – rattling around in your brain out in the open. Where you can see it and feel it and really analyze it all. Which leads to forming a plan.
So like I always say, freaking do something about it. So, I called my work Employee Assistance Program number and set up a time to see a therapist.
Side note – If you are thinking about starting to see a therapist, talk to the HR person at your office. There is a large chance that you could get free visits through your EAP program.
Anywho, I had my first appointment last week and I wanted to share with you all the top three reasons I think you should go see a therapist if you have ever experienced depression, anxiety, or just need someone to talk to.
Number One: You can literally spill your guts to a complete stranger that won’t judge you or tell a soul what you said.
I don’t talk a lot about my childhood. And that is for a reason. I come from what some people would consider a “broken home”. And it effects my life. Every. Single. Day. It’s sad how much events from your childhood can stay with you through the rest of your life. It’s like there is this tiny burden in the back of my mind that is always reminding me I’m not good enough, smart enough, fit enough, etc.
So when I saw my therapist, I talked about it. And talked. And talked. I talked about things only my closest friends and husband know. It was like verbal vomit. I couldn’t stop. It just all came spilling out. I felt like every skeleton in my closet just fell onto the floor. It was absolutely liberating, terrifying, and overwhelming all at once. But you know what, it was SO EFFECTIVE. I left the office with a clear mind and swollen eyes.
Number two: Sometimes it is just better to seek help from a professional.
I had all of these emotions bottled up inside of me. And they are things that I had talked to family and friends about. But these are real issues that could definitely benefit from professional help. My family and friends are always willing to listen, but they have lives and issues and kids and schedules and problems too.
So I pay someone to listen to me and offer me sound advice. Just like I paid for my friends in college by joining a sorority. Hahaha, just joking. I love Chi Omega – especially at Western Kentucky University! Go TOPS!
Number three: Seeking help from a therapist should be just as normal as going to the doctor for a checkup.
We check our bodies for infections and cancers, so we need to also make sure our minds are on the same track. Like I said before, you can exercise and take medicine and eat every vegetable and do all the juice cleanses, but if you still have that voice in the back of your head saying you aren’t good enough, you will never truly be healthy.
So this is me begging you to seek professional help if there is even an inkling of a thought you might need it. It is so worth it. You can thank me later.
Until Next Time,