• When to see a therapist / counselor? Part 2

    Parenting issues

    God (or the higher power you believe in) must have a sense of humor. How does the hardest job around come with no instruction manual?! Talking about being thrown in the deep end of the pool! Parenting is one of the toughest and longest jobs around. Little people-aka – children have unique and consistent needs that have to be met. In addition, they do not have the ability to clearly articulate what is going on with them. Oh but wait, there’s more! Couple that with parents who have different beliefs on child rearing, usually based on how they were raised (either to be completely different or be much of the same as their parents were). Counseling can help navigate and educate on parenting issues, provide children with voice and perspective, and enhance the skill sets of the parents. Think of it as a delayed training program of sorts. It bears mentioning that therapists use tools to help get one unstuck vs. providing a road map on how they would raise children. A number of these tools have been validated using research. I know you were in the trial – but other humans were. Most likely you were not in clinical trials of the prescription or over the counter medications you have taken – but somehow you used them and found that they worked (at least some of the time).

    Relationship issues

    As referenced before, God (or your higher power) must have a sense of humor. Outside of parenting, marriage or long-term cohabitating coupling is the hardest thing most of us will do. These types of relationships, especially marriage, is the hardest, most comprehensive relationships on the planet. There is no other relationship that combines, love, family, children/child rearing, goals (or lack thereof), finances/credit, emotional wounds, sex, careers/jobs, and health. Whew, that’s a mouthful! You can see no other relationship on the planet is as complex. Having an intermediary that is non-judgmental (most of the time), and objective can see each person’s effect on the relationship, and tools to either better communicate or help to heal past hurts that find their way into most relationships today.


    Addiction (MEANING OF WORD) is common in this world. (TRENDS OF RATES OF ADDICTION). We often use substances to escape, cope, or numb the pain. It can start innocently by being part of the crowd in high school, to using narcotics, tobacco or alcohol to help deal with the everyday stressors. Lo and behold, unbeknownst to us, we may be more genetically inclined to have an addictive personality. Process/behavioral addictions such as gambling, porn, etc. are on the rise with increased accessibility. Essentially, we want to not feel what we are feeling or thinking at the moment, and we want to feel something different or better. Addictions often are the drug of choice for other mental illnesses and can mask what really is going on with the person. Helping people with those underlying issues that cause addictions is key with therapists in helping people get clean. Higher levels of care are also a possibility depending on the situation.