Counsellor, that horrible icky word. A counsellor is someone who only asks, “and how does that make you feel” right? Wrong!
I want you to answer these questions for me (I promise they’re easy):
How did you learn to walk?
Who taught you to write?
How did you learn to swim?
I’m guessing most of you answered with something like my parents taught me; I went to swimming school; and my parents and teacher taught me. Was I close?
Now answer this question. Who taught you how to deal with your emotions?
A little harder to answer, right? I mean it’s not like you have an exploring emotions class in school (How could they? Everyone deals with emotions differently) and your parents don’t always directly tell you how to deal with them.
For me, I watched and copied what other people were doing. This method didn’t teach me how to be true to myself and it definitely didn’t help me with ANY of my relationships (romantic or otherwise). You see, I have a few stress-head family members, so I learnt how to get stressed. I have some extremely negative and angry ones as well, so I learnt how to yell and have a negative outlook on life… Great!
I want you to answer one more question for me: why is there a negative stigma around counselling?
If you asked me that question a few years ago and I would have said something like: “All they do is ask ‘and how does that make you feel’. Why would I pay for that? If I go, it means I’m a failure or they’re going to judge me.”
Ask me that question now and I can’t give you a real answer besides “lack of knowledge”. People haven’t been taught the benefits of seeing a counsellor. They have been taught that you should keep your struggles to yourself, you shouldn’t burden other people with your worries and you should suffer quietly. Apparently it’s glamorous.
This has led to the stigma around counselling and it needs to be stopped.