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5 Things You Need To Consider Before Going To Therapy

Hey Cuties,

You already know my word for the year is intentional, although it is my word for 2018 I began being intentional at the end of 2017. I saw a therapist for the first time; actually for the second time in my life. My Mom took me to one when I was really young, she thought something was wrong with me and was looking for a fix. As it turns out, nothing was wrong, I was just a busybody and needed to be kept busy. Ha! I have no recollection of this but the story makes me giggle.

5 Things You Need To Consider Before Going To Therapy

At the end of last year, Babe and I decided to try couples therapy/counseling. This was a first for the both of us, we have talked about it here and there but had never done it. Over the years I have heard all kinds of things about therapy, both good and bad. At first, it was something only “famous people” did, at least that was the only time I heard it mentioned. For many years therapy was very taboo in the black community.  I would hear people say “Don’t tell people your problems”.

5 things to consider before going to therapy

Well, I have my own perspective now and it is one of the best decisions we have ever made. We don’t lay out on a chaise (Did you say it like the commercial?) but it is a nice environment. It is not spilling out all of your business, it is a conversation. Therapy is self-care just like getting your hair done, nails done, a massage, Target, you get it. We are investing in ourselves, although we are doing couples therapy we are learning things about ourselves individually that makes us better partners together. We’ve been at this thing for 14 years *body roll* this is a much-needed tune-up, oil change, front end alignment, and tire rotation.  Honestly, it has been a relief off of my shoulders.

5 things to consider before going to therapy

5 Things to Consider Before Going to Therapy

#1: Find a good therapist: Finding a good therapist is essential to the process. Put as much work into it as you do when finding the perfect stylist/barber or your eyebrow gal.  You need to connect with this person, this allows for better results and a better experience. I do not recommend going to someone you know or a friend of a friend.  If you would feel more comfortable with a woman, then seek out a woman.

#2 The Cost: It is not as expensive as I thought, so says the girl with health insurance. It cost the same copay as going to see a specialty doctor. Tip: If you have a job utilize your Employee Assistance Program (EAP), they typically offer anywhere from 4 – 8 FREE therapy session for yourself or someone in your immediate family.  Your co-workers and supervisors are not privy to this information.

#3 Have a Goal: You need to know what you want to get out of this experience.  Do you want help getting over a trauma? Do you want tips to cope with a difficult parent? Do you want to manage your mental health concerns? Do you want to address behavioral changes in your kid? Do you want better communication with your spouse? Whatever your it is, know it before you go. This allows you to maximize your experience. Don’t be afraid to write down your goals and the particular points you want to bring up.

#4 Be Open: If you are not open then you will not meet your goal. It is as simple as that, the therapist is not here to force you to speak.  They are going to get paid no matter what. If you do not feel comfortable speaking see point #1. If you are not going to be honest about what is really going on you will not meet your goal.  You may need to have a come to Jesus moment with yourself before your first session.

#5 It will Get Uncomfortable: At some point in your sessions, things will get uncomfortable. It is a part of the process, don’t take it personally. Remember tip #3 you are working toward your goal. We do things and we do not realize we do them and or we don’t understand why we do them. The finding may be tough, but it is the breakthrough you are seeking.

Lifestyle Media Correspondent MimiCuteLips shares 5 things you need to consider before going to therapy. She has been going to therapy and has had a very positive experience.

Have you ever tried therapy?  Chat with me in the comments below or FBIG, and Twitter.

 

Article written by:

Mimi Green is the Lifestyle Media Correspondent and editor behind MimiCuteLips®. She is a mother of two and a girlfriend to one. You can find Mimi working media at your favorite events, traveling and trying out new adventures, or working on a dope DIY project.

Join the discussion

  1. Sheena Steward

    This is such a great post! I’m definitely an advocate of therapy and have been going on and off for eight years. It’s awesome the two of you went together. Your five things to consider are on point too.

    • MimiCuteLips

      Thanks, I wish we had made the decision to go sooner. Yet our time was just right. We will continue to go together but I want to go on my own as well.

  2. angela

    I have been. The tips you gave are so important. Kudos to self care!

  3. Chrissy

    Proud of you! You rock! Therapy is great, many people should do it!

  4. Terri

    I really enjoyed this post. Mental health is so important and not enough is done to highlight that. I love that you said therapy is just like selfceare and investing in yourself. I wish more people looked at it this way. Lastly, you make a great point about having a therapy goal. I don’t think I’ve ever done that but I wish I did.

    • MimiCuteLips

      People still act like something must be wrong with you if you go. Shoot, I think something is wrong if you don’t go. lol It is a mental doctor just like you see a doctor for any other body part.

  5. robin rue

    I did some therapy (grief counseling) after my mom passed last year. It didn’t work for me personally because I found it hard to open up one on one. Support groups worked much better in my case.

    • MimiCuteLips

      Robin, that is good though; you gave it a try. You realized that it is hard to open up and that is okay. Support groups are amazing as well, and it sounds like you got exactly what you needed.

  6. Jeanette

    This is definitely something to keep in mind when you go to get counseling. I have never done this with my husband I have a my own for a different reason! The big thing for me is I had to get along with the counselor and then we had a similar life focus.

  7. candy

    I believe therapy can be extremely helpful. Several of my friends are therapist and are very helpful. Don’t over look going doesn’t mean a person is weak, like going to see a physician for a physical illness.

  8. Joanna

    Really good post. I know so many people that are against therapy like it’s a problem. Totally agree with having a goal.

  9. Amber Myers

    This is good to keep in mind. I have never see a therapist, but I’m not opposed to one. I know they can help!

    I love your dress by the way!

  10. Gisele

    This is good advice. I ended up in therapy back in the 1990’s and it really helped me. I know there are some people that are afraid to go to a therapist but it can be the best decision one can make.

  11. Jay Colby

    Very helpful tips about therapy. I’ve always thought mental health and therapy should be a topic discussed more in the Black community.

  12. Emily

    I think it is great to strengthen a relationship. Your points to consider are really great, I think most overlook that it will be uncomfortable at times. But working through things is so important!

  13. Joely Smith

    What a great article. I tried to get my soon to be ex to go but that didn’t happen. I am so glad you and your man did and it worked well for you! I love your dress by the way!

  14. Carissa

    Great Information! I remember when Darrick and I started counseling I was really nervous but I found that it was so easy to talk and get things out in the open! Even though we started going to counseling for our grief it helped us understand things better as a couple!

  15. Jenn @ EngineerMommy

    Finding the right therapist is very important. If you find someone you don’t trust and feel comfortable with, you can be wasting time & money!

  16. Heather

    I’ve been to counseling. It can really help. I had to deal with my mother’s boyfriend sexually abusing me and my mom allowing it. I ran away at 16 and the people who took me in, had me do counseling. It really helped me to get over those years where I wasn’t in control of my life and it helped me to take control of the rest of my life and not be a victim anymore.

    • MimiCuteLips

      Heather, thanks for sharing your truth. I’m glad you were able to get counseling, that is a very traumatic experience. Kudos to you for being a survivor.

  17. Kim

    Thank you for sharing. I think the more conversations from people who look like us about the importance of seeking therapy would make it not such a taboo topic within our community. I’ve gone, but I’m pretty sure that’s something my family and friends don’t know.

    • MimiCuteLips

      I totally agree I’m trying to do my part and add to the conversation. I think a lot of people keep it a secret. There are ways to share (like me) without out airing our your personal.

  18. Pam

    A GOOD therapist can help pretty much anyone. I try to see one regularly to stay on top of my mental health.

  19. Kita

    I wish my husband and I would have gone to therapy. I definitely think it’s a beautiful thing.

  20. Amanda

    This post is wonderful. I love that you broke down the stigma of therapy and highlighted how it can be so helpful for couples, no matter what their challenges or strengths are. PS–Your dress is FANTASTIC!

  21. Anosa

    You’re so right, in the black community we were often told never to see therapist because its just not the done thing but it has to be for our own betterment. Love your tips

  22. steph parrell

    This is a wonderful post. I think being open is key, because walking into such a personal experience with huge expectations is going to put pressure and insecurity in the way of actually growing learning.

  23. Ola

    I think it’s good for couples to spend time speaking openly and honestly with one another. I think it’s important to not overlook the value of older married couples around us whom we trust and respect. Many of them can tell you the same things as a therapist.

    • MimiCuteLips

      I agree Ola, seasoned married couples give great advice. However, they can’t help you understand how and why you communicate differently.

  24. Tiffany Haywood

    Really great tips! I think choosing therapy when needed shows strength and courage. You are will to face the issues to find the solutions. You definitely mentioned a few things I don’t think I would have considered in making my decision. Thanks for this.

  25. Farrah Less

    In my opinion if tou think theraphy would save up yoir relationship I say go. I could what people would think. Every time i hear couple theraphy it reminds me of the movie Couples Retreat . I dont mind going on a theraphy if this will be held in Tahiti 🤣

    • MimiCuteLips

      We don’t go to save our relationship, it isn’t in danger. However, we go to make sure we don’t end up in danger. Much like the same reasons we get physicals every year. Tahiti would be an amazing place to go, I need to see this movie.

  26. Chubskulit Rose

    I have never gone to any kind of therapy. I am not sure if I would be comfortable about talking personal things to a stranger but I guess it works for some people.

    • MimiCuteLips

      I think I’m the opposite, I would rather share with an unbias person that is educated in this area. I don’t share my personal with my family, especially when it comes to my relationship.

  27. Sara Welch

    I don’t think I need a therapist just yet. But I do know that these tips are really going to help someone a ton!

  28. Antoinette Cain

    Starting therapy has been one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made. My therapist is a perfect fit for me and I look forward to being able to get things off of my chest in an objective environment.

  29. Lisa Marie Heath

    I’m a total believer in everyone being different, but each person knows what’s right for them. I think a lot of problems couple’s face can greatly benefit in therapy, but they simply find it taboo and won’t give it a chance. Sometimes it’s the best thing you could have done for your relationship!

  30. Gemille Sleweon

    Therapy can be taboo for some because that person may not feel comfortable sharing intimate details of their life with a stranger. That was my initial thought before going to counseling, but after i really connected with my therapist and after our first session, i was so comfortable, it was easy for me to communicate with her.

  31. 1stopmom

    I have been in therapy before. It took a few tries to find one that worked for me. I don’t need to see her all the time but she is definitely a big help when I am feeling overwhelmed with my anxiety and depression. I like being about to talk with someone who helps me to see the big picture.

  32. Jennifer Hamra

    I think couples therapy can be very helpful for every relationship. My husband and I tried couples therapy with two different therapists and we didn’t like them. LOL So I agree with you about finding a good therapist. Sometimes you have to meet a few different therapists to find someone you really connect with. Therapy does get a little uncomfortable, but I think it’s important to have a conversation with your partner and say during therapy it’s a “Safe Space” where you both can be completely honest and open about your feelings. Great tips! 🙂

    • MimiCuteLips

      There is nothing wrong with shopping around until you find the right fit.

      Yes, it has to be a safe space for each of you. You should not be punished for being open and honest. It is to the betterment of your relationships.

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