excuses for not getting a therapist
February 27, 2013 by
Categories: Self, Therapy

one of things people seem to be most surprised about when it comes to therapists is that they too, have seen or may also need to see a therapist of their own. this admittance and truth can be difficult for both therapist (e.g. myself) to acknowledge, as well as for the client to believe. i find this to be true because the  false impression (hence, the start of this blog!) that therapists should have it “all together” is not just something that clients think, but that perhaps a thought that overcomes therapists as well.

i remember when i contemplated the field of marriage and family therapy, i had to think long and hard if someone who has had troubles herself could be of benefit to someone else. would i be a fake? don’t i need to have everything wrapped neatly in a bow first?

slowly, and through the gentle encouragement of mentors, i realized that the very fact that my life hasn’t and will never be perfect was what would contribute to one of my greatest strengths as a therapist- i could be someone that could more deeply empathize and empower.

that brings me back to my current dilemma-  being in a place with a lot of new life changes going on, i know that i would benefit from a therapist.  and yet, i continue to put it off with many excuses- no time, it’s expensive, i don’t know the area, and i can get better in other ways. the problem is that even if i know what may be causing the stress and what i should do about it (and what i may advise others to do!), it doesn’t always make it easy. temporarily though, i find myself not only feeling better, but strongly accepting that it’s okay to feel the bad with the good, and thus my desire for a therapy also reduces.

the truth is, while those excuses i just mentioned can be valid reasons, i know that above all that it’s tempting to push therapy aside because it can be hard emotional work. and when you’re already facing many challenges, that can feel overwhelming.

on the bright side- i have found both through experience and secondhand that the very act of calling and scheduling your first appointment can lead to an increase of hope and positive feelings. it’s a decision and act of decisive control that says: i want to get better and i am in charge of making this happen.

as far as hard work goes, yes, it is. but it’s hard work that’s productive and leading to better things, where the difficult emotions you’re feeling now may not necessarily feel like they’re being coped with in a healthy way.

point being- if you’re not ready to make that call, then it’s important to think about what’s really holding you back. as i conclude this post, i feel more clarity and confidence in moving forward. it takes courage to not only get hep, but to admit you can’t do it alone. and if there’s anything i truly believe in, it’s the power of relationships and community. and as a therapist, i’m not immune to needing it as much as anyone else!


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One Thought About excuses for not getting a therapist

  • MTK
    March 10, 2013 at 8:11 pm Reply

    Hopefully you will get adjusted to the new environment. It’s tough leaving once family and moving to a new city. I believe that our struggles helps define us. I believe knowing once limitation and knowing when to ask for help is actually one of the greatest strengths. Hopefully, this experience will make you a better person and a better therapist.
    Good luck!

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