Who needs a psychologist and when
The culture of seeking of a psychologist’s help is just being introduced in Georgia. There are more myths around this profession rather than real information about it.
Myth 1: A psychologist will start moralizing me
One of my acquaintances suffered a strong depression after breakup with a married man. When I advised her to visit a psychologist, she fatly refused – a psychologist will start moralizing me and, also, ‘I’m ashamed to tell this story to a stranger.’
If a psychologist is a real professional, one will never hear from him/her the remarks like: ‘Oh, how did you do that!’ and he/she will not moralize you either. The psychotherapy has absolutely different objectives: to study, how you have found yourself in a particular situation, as well as what you need to find the way out of it.
Myth 2: I will get used to the sessions
‘One gets used to psychotherapy like a drug and then loses the ability to make independent decisions,’ – that’s the argument I’ve also heard.
However, it’s actually quite different. One of the main goals of an effective psychotherapy is exactly to show a person his/her ability to independently solve the problems.
Myth 3: I will become estranged from communicating with people
‘After visiting a psychotherapists, people start sorting out their relationship with the people around them and become unbearable,’ – this is one more myth.
In fact, one of the goals of psychotherapy is to teach a person to recognize and understand one’s desires and to be able to communicate them to others in a form not provoking a conflict.
Perhaps, when visiting a psychotherapist, one will make an unpleasant discovery – one may realize that there are people, whom one will never be able to reach an agreement with, find a common language or feel comfortable with. However, such kind of people will exist regardless of whether you consult a psychologist or not.
Myth 4: The life will change radically
‘After having relations with a psychologist people radically change their lives – leave their job, move to another country, get divorced’ – that’s what one of my friends told me, who constantly complains about the routine life, but does nothing to change it.
All that certainly happens, though not so often. The work with a psychologist brings to the surface many subconscious desires and feelings. Under their influence, people often get a desire to radically change something, especially in the areas, where they feel most uncomfortable. However, a visit to a psychologist will not a priori push you to run or make any other sudden movements. It may be quite the contrary – you may feel that your place is not in your family, in this country and in order to feel well, you need to escape somewhere – and after visiting a psychologist, you will make sure that this is not an option, that happiness is right here and you push it and cannot see it for different reasons.
Myth 5: Visiting a psychologist is an indication of weakness
‘I’m not that weak so that I needed a psychologist’s help. There is nothing happening in my life that I could not deal with myself, perhaps you’ve also heard such an argument.
It’s a myth. And the truth is that only the courageous people visit a psychologist – those, who have guts to admit that they have a problem. It’s not that easy to make this step. Especially in our society, where everyone is trying to demonstrate his/her success and well-being and, sometimes, fail to admit even to themselves, that they have problems. So, a person, applying to a psychologist is certainly not a weak one, on the contrary.
Myth 6: ‘I am not crazy’
People with mental health problems seek a psychiatrist’s help. Psychologists and psychotherapists work with healthy people, who are facing certain difficulties and problems.
Myth 7: Those, who have no friends, visit a psychologist
Sharing problems with friends – why not, but a friend is not a professional. If your goal is not just to ‘open your heart’, but to really solve a problem, than no friendly conversation will substitute a professional assistance.
Besides, the friends may conceal a bitter truth from you in order not to hurt you. Psychotherapy is not always comfortable. Psychologists often have to tell you unpleasant things.
Myth 8: ‘I will become a different person’
“A psychologist will have such an influence on me, that I will no longer be myself.
Mind that good specialists will never use manipulation techniques, so you are not at risk of becoming a spineless, flaccid puppet.