I remember my first day in treatment… I walked into the group therapy room, and I couldn’t stop crying. I cried for a bunch of reasons. I cried because I was scared. I was scared of the unknown, scared of the weight gain, and so much more. But, I think the main reason I cried was because I was in denial. I couldn’t believe that I was one of “them”. I couldn’t believe that I was at this place, physically and figuratively speaking. People sitting in a circle talking about their problems was for movies and comic strips. Not for real life, and definitely not for me!!
Very quickly I saw that the other people in the group, were “normal” people with “normal” lives, just they were struggling, as do all humans. At our core, we had more in common than not. Sure, we may look different, our struggles may appear a little different too, and our unhealthy coping mechanisms may play out a little differently from one another. But, at the end of the day, we are all caring human beings who are trying our best to make it in this world.
In my opinion, people who go through these struggles, and go through therapy, end up as stronger people later in life. Because of our mental illnesses, we are forced to deal with our problems, and we will be healthier later in life and more equipped to deal with other problems that come our way. Whereas, people who are never forced to look inside themselves and deal with their “stuff” sometimes crash when life throws them something that is difficult or unfamiliar. I think the group sessions also made me a lot more accepting and nonjudgmental of others.
Bottom line: Therapy isn’t for “crazy” or “weird” people. It’s pretty normal actually. Once I opened up to my friends, I was shocked to hear how many people in my life go to therapy. People struggle. It’s part of being human. If you ask my opinion, I think everyone should go to therapy (mental illness or not). You have your Rav, your doctor, and your therapist. Spiritual, physical, and mental health. Again, it’s part of being human, i.e normal!! 🙂
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