A friend of mine had a ground-shaking, nuclear blow up with her husband. This fight was so bad that her immediate community rallied around her to make sure she was okay, being careful not to make her feel like we were all up in her business. Sidebar: Sometimes being all up in your friend’s business is EXACTLY what she needs, but I digress.
Over time, she assured me that things were getting back on track. She had faith, and she was strong. She and her man had even gone to therapy once to work out their issues.
Once is not enough.
This conversation is not about therapy alone. It’s about consistency. I don’t believe it’s possible to make any lasting progress in any area (i.e. faith, relationships, finances, emotional well-being) without consistency. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had friends say they went to therapy once or a couple times to work out their issues, and it only helped a little. Of course it only helped a little! It’s supposed to be a process.
Going to therapy one time for an issue you’ve had for years is like getting an x-ray for a broken arm and then walking away without any more treatment. That’s foolish and cruel to the soul.
If you have been dealing with a lot of tension in your relationship or your own issues (depression and anxiety) by yourself for years and haven’t seen major improvement, go to counseling. GET HELP. You don’t have to suffer alone for years at a time because it’s familiar. You can be happy, actually happy with yourself and in your relationship if you do the work.
When you go to therapy, you will have to talk about yourself. If you are a young black woman, this might feel crazy because we don’t like to tell people our business. But you will need to talk to someone, if you want to get better. You will feel vulnerable. You will talk about things you’ve avoided talking about for years, but that is a GOOD thing. You think you are protecting yourself by dealing with pain alone but you’re not. Isolating yourself only keeps you in that state of pain longer.
You will need to give yourself TIME to heal. I’ve been in therapy for five months, and I know folks who have been in therapy for years working on deeply rooted issues. I’m not planning on staying in therapy forever, but I’m not rushing through my process. I’m dealing with YEARS of trauma. A few months is nothing if it’s going to help me get better.
If you need to go to counseling and still haven’t taken the first step, stop putting your emotional wellness on the backburner. I deeply believe that if you commit to dealing with your own issues, the better you will be at caring for others. If you’ve gone to one or two sessions but haven’t fully healed, I urge you to keep going. You are worth that investment.
About me . . .
I'm Cyrah Hill. I'm a woman of faith, an actor and an everyday black girl.