The idea that seeking help makes you weak seems to be deeply ingrained into our culture. It prevents many people from prospering. The World Health Organization estimates that over 450 million people suffer from mental health disorders around the world. Approximately two-thirds of those people never seek help, often because they believe that mental illness is a personal failure for which they should be ashamed. The result is that many people suffer unnecessarily with highly treatable problems.
If you broke your leg and needed surgery, you’d see a surgeon. If you had a cavity, you wouldn’t attempt to fill it on your own; you’d see a dentist. Should you want to build a new home, it would be advisable to consult a general contractor or hire one to do the job. It is unlikely that consulting any of the aforementioned professionals would cause you to feel weak or bad about yourself. That same logic should apply to mental health problems. It’s unrealistic to believe that you can treat psychological problems without any training whatsoever. Nor should one expect friends or family members to treat psychological problems. Assuredly, they care about you and want to help but they simply aren’t trained for the job.
Therapists learn to treat psychological problems through years of study and training. It is not innate knowledge. It must be learned, much like the skills of surgery and dentistry and general contracting.
People who struggle are not weak. They are the norm. Everyone struggles at some point in their lives and would benefit from help. It’s the nature of living in a complex and confusing world.
My advice is to seek professional help. Counseling is the most efficient way to remove psychological roadblocks from your life. Hopefully this advice helps. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle