Hi! If you have clicked on this article maybe you, or someone you know, is suffering and you are trying to help them find the best treatment possible. Now, because this is such a personal topic, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Nicole, and I suffer from diagnosed anxiety and depression. I know talking about this is hard and uncomfortable, but it’s important to know the different options of help you can get as someone who suffers from mental health issues. It’s even more important to note that just because one option does not fix your issues, it doesn’t mean that something is wrong with you. Here is why.
I started therapy after my doctor recommended it to me during my sophomore year. I did not want to try it, but I went through with it to please my mom. The first session was okay, we just got to know one another and talked about some of my main problems; there were a lot of tears. I went to this therapist for several more sessions, and each got worse. I had to drive myself 25 minutes to get there, in traffic hour, needless to say my anxiety increased every time I went. She also kept bringing up the same issues over and over that made me cry so hard I could barely talk. This was extremely frustrating because I felt as though I was making no progress because I spent our 50 minutes crying about the same thing.
Eventually, my mom transferred me to a closer therapist. I really liked this one; she was young, fun, and didn’t pressure me to talk about anything I didn’t want to. However, because I don’t like talking about my feelings in the first place, I didn’t make much progress here either. A few sessions in, she informed me that she was moving and that I would need to find a new therapist. I was so discouraged that I gave up, and I quit going. I began to shove down my feelings because I didn’t want to talk and I moved on from the idea of someone helping me. I took this time to help myself, by not having the crutch of another person, I found some new hobbies such as painting, I made new friends, and I started being more open with my family.
During the summer before junior year, my grandmother died. I lost touch with my best and only friend, and I was getting ready to start the hardest year of highschool yet. I fell back into old habits, and my parents became more and more worried. I met a boy, and we started dating and he noticed how sad I could get. They all begged me to go back to therapy but I still had a bad taste of it from my last two experiences. Nonetheless, I listened because I knew they cared, so I started going to a new therapist right by my school. I decided that I was going to go into this with an open mind, and a positive attitude. I did all the exercises, she gave me and filled out each worksheet with as much honesty and detail as I could, but after a few sessions, I felt no improvement. I tried a few more sessions, and still nothing. So, this is when I concluded that therapy is just not for me. And guess what? THAT IS OKAY.
It is okay because I have not given up. I am still fighting everyday for my happiness and control over my own emotions. Whether you are fighting with the help of one trained professional, a group of friends, your family, or by yourself, you are doing amazing. If you have never tried therapy and aren’t sure if it will work for you, I suggest you at least give it a chance. But if it doesn’t work there are many other options as well. You can read self-help books, ecotherapy, medication, or alternative therapies such as yoga, meditation, massage and herbal remedies. Therapy is not for everyone, and in the end you have to follow your gut because only you know what is best for your body.