#3 Fear: A good reason to go to counseling, is often a good reason why one’s not in counseling. Numerous concerns are offered in articles that result in avoiding professional help. Commonly, fear is associated with the mental health stigma, and what others will think if they find out the person is seeing a counselor (http://davidsusman.com/2015/06/11/8-reasons-why-people-dont-get-mental-health-treatment/), or not knowing what to expect makes it extremely difficult to take the plunge and find out (http://lifecounselor.net/why-mental-health-therapy/). Hale (2014) addressed five fears individuals face in making the decision to attend counseling: she lists them as fear stigma, fear of diagnosis, fear of always being in therapy, fear of being judged, and fear of opening up to a stranger (https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-13317/5-common-fears-that-keep-people-out-of-therapy.html).
To recap the series, the major issues that appeared to pop up time and time again resulting in individuals avoiding counseling were the feeling that one does not have severe enough problems or is “not crazy” so to speak, environmental constraints or barriers such as the costs, and fear. This is a short list, but it seemed to be most relevant to individuals considering whether or not to find a counselor. As a counselor, of course I am going to say it is worth one’s time, but ultimately, I would simply suggest meeting with a counselor to determine if it is the right decision. I provide free consultations, as do the majority of counselors, and in these consultations there is no pressure to commit to treatment. However, a person is able to find out what counseling might provide to assist with finding solutions to current struggles.
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