6 Misconceptions About Participating in Counseling Sessions
Many people have the wrong idea about counseling. There are so many different types of counseling services from individual counseling to couples therapy or marriage intensives plus more. If you are not familiar with counseling or what it is, it’s easy to come up with an idea that is completely misconstrued and misguided. Here are a few common misconceptions about counseling and the truth behind the myths:
Counseling is reserved for people with severe mental and emotional issues.
You can think of counseling like a medical check up. You shouldn’t only go to the doctor when you have an obvious and severe health issue. Regular check ups maintain your health and body and can recognize problems before they become life threatening. Similarly, regular counseling sessions can keep a person in good mental health as they learn new coping skills and how to experience the best out of life. If only people with severe issues went to counseling, then the others would be missing out on a unique and helpful experience.
Having to go through counseling shows that you are weak.
Some of the strongest people out there and the ones who can admit when they need help. Prideful and arrogant people who try to go at it alone are the ones who fall apart the quickest. It takes a strong person to realize they need help overcoming an obstacle. It takes an even stronger person to accept the assistance and decide to trust a person that they just met.
Everyone will know if I go to counseling and they will think something is wrong with me.
Most counselors have a strict confidentiality policy that they take great strides to adhere to at all costs. The only time an exception will be made is if the individual counseling is at risk of harm to themselves or others. Some counseling buildings even have a separate private entrance that can not be seen from the street if you are worried about people you know seeing you go into the building. Many offices are part of a complex of many different businesses and no one from the street would know which office you are going to even if they saw you going into the building.
Counselors only want to fix my problems to add a notch to their belt.
While fixing problems is a common misconception, in individual counseling, the counselor rarely tries to find an immediate cure. Rather, they go through an entire process to help the individual understand and explore their own feelings and concerns and look through all the options, allowing them to decide for themselves what they want to. If you do not want your problem to be fixed by the counselor, they are not going to try and force themselves into your life. The whole process is regulated by you.
If the counselor has not been through what I have, there’s no way they will understand me.
Even if the counselor has a completely different background to yours, they are trained and experienced in different situations no matter how unique and will be respectful of diversity. No matter what you’ve been through, a counselor will be able to guide you through the difficult time. There are not many situations that they have not heard about if they have been counselling for any amount of time.
They’re just going to give me medication to take.
Counselors actually can not prescribe pills or medication to clients. Counselling is a specific method of therapy that does not involve medication or surgery or any thing other than the individual counseling of someone as they talk through their needs and concerns to find out if there is an underlying issue which needs to be taken care of, as well.
Individual counseling as well as other types are only there to help you. There is no angle, no hidden agenda; only a desire to help you through whatever difficult time you are facing right now. If you can find it in yourself to trust a counselor, you may be pleasantly surprised to see how helpful it can be just to have someone who is always there by your side and always on your side, helping you to navigate your way through the murkiness that is called life.