by Annabelle Parr
Admitting that you need help is one of the bravest things a person can do. Whether it’s asking for help from a friend or family member, or calling a therapist to make an appointment, reaching out for support takes great strength and courage.
Deciding to seek therapy can feel especially daunting. While our friends and families know us, a therapist is a stranger at first. For some people, perhaps this is a comforting thought, as it may feel easier to talk to a stranger than a loved one.
But for others, especially those who struggle with vulnerability, the idea of talking to anyone, let alone someone new, might feel out of the question. You might wonder how you can trust someone you just met, and whose life you know almost nothing about? How can you be sure that they aren’t judging you? Are they really as compassionate as they claim?
Given that there is a fair amount of conversation surrounding therapy today, most of us know that therapists are kind, compassionate, empathetic, non-judgmental, impartial observers who are there to help us move through difficult situations and emotions. But what is often left out of the conversation is why therapists are that way.
Of course they have been educated and trained in their field. But what people don’t talk about very often, at least outside of the world of therapy/psychology, is that therapists tend to choose their career path because something in their life led them there. A person typically does not choose to become a therapist because their life was perfect or because they had everything all figured out.
Often, they have encountered their own set of struggles that led them to this field. They likely know how powerful therapy and psychoeducation can be from some sort of personal experience.
So when they say that they aren’t judging you, when they meet you with deep rooted understanding, it is because on some level they truly do understand. Though their story will not be the same as yours, they too have a story. They know what it is to struggle and they also know what it is to heal.
As their client, you will not hold their story. You may get little snippets of it every once in a while, when they decide that sharing a piece of their story may help you with yours, but for the most part, you will not know what their pain or struggle was. Nor should you. That is part of what makes therapy so helpful (and unusual). But even if you do not know what it is, remember that your therapist also has a story. With this knowledge in mind, it might be a little bit easier and less scary to let them earn your trust and to let them in on your story.
So if you are struggling and you choose to call a therapist for help, keep in mind that they already know how brave you are.
CSAM IS HERE TO HELP
If you or someone you love might benefit from acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), or biofeedback for anxiety, depression, stress, or PTSD, or if you would like more information about our therapy services, please contact us at (858) 354-4077 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.