There are a lot of hardships to being a military family but paying for counseling is not one of those things. What? Free counseling?
Yes. Read on for all of the reasons I believe everyone should giving counseling a shot.
Myth: All of your problems will be solved.
Truth: Sorry, but no. Counseling is a fantastic tool to work through some issues and hopefully find some solutions or steps to solutions. Sometimes, you figure out the solutions yourself and other times the counselor points you in the right direction. Counselors are equipped with ideas, tips, and resources to help you help yourself. If you walk into counseling thinking that all of your problems will be fixed, you’ll be sorely disappointment.
Counseling is intended to be a tool; not the answer.
Myth: I don’t want to pay someone to listen to me talk.
Truth: Well, maybe 1) you don’t have to pay. There are a lot of resources to free counseling options, especially if you are related to the military in some way, shape, or form. 2) If you’re willing to invest in getting yourself haircuts or manicures, you can invest in your emotional health. Everyone needs counsel, everyone needs someone to talk to. 3) It won’t be just you talking. Every counselor has his or her own style, but some of my favorite counselors have treated our sessions like a conversation.
Myth: Counseling is for people with big problems. Bigger than mine.
Truth: Yes people go to counseling for all sorts of big “problems.” We live in a very broken, hurtful world. But, you can go to counseling just because you’re lonely or struggling with personal growth in a certain area. Identifying your weakness, establishing healthy boundaries, and learning how to improve your relationships are all feasible and healthy things to focus on in counseling.
Myth: Nothing is wrong with me, why do I need counseling?
Truth: I am a firm believer that everyone needs counseling periodically in their life.
Most people don’t do this, and some people have really wise people in their life that often act as a counselor would. But, counseling is a very positive, proactive step to take in your emotional health.
Being healthy is and should be holistic; not focused on just one area of your life.
Myth: I don’t have the time for counseling.
Truth: I understand, you’re busy – you may be a single parent or have a very demanding job. We all have our demands and responsibilities. Did you know virtual counseling exists? You can do counseling sessions via phone or chat. You can schedule extra long sessions so you don’t have to go every week.
Counseling can fit your needs and your schedule.
If it’s too hard or expensive to get a sitter, schedule virtual sessions during nap or after bed. If you’re working 60+ hour weeks, schedule one session a month for two hours. Something is better than nothing! There are always a million and one reasons to not do something. But taking the time and risk in doing something could change your life forever.
Myth: It’s too expensive.
Truth: There are a lot of hardships to being a military family but paying for counseling is not one of those things. Personally, I recommend Military OneSource and its free counseling.
And by free, I mean completely free.
All it takes is one quick, 10-minute call. They ask your preferences and line everything up for you – no paperwork is needed on your behalf at all.
*Note: there are countless other programs you can go through for free counseling besides Military OneSource, but I do not have personal experience with them.
** If you are Tricare Prime Active Duty, couseling is FREE, and there is no referral required.