One of the questions we often get asked when folks inquire about counselling with us is: “Can you make me feel better?”
A fairly obvious and understandable question really, considering that generally, counselling is pursued because of some sort of distress for which relief is desired.
Sabrina has some thoughts on this:
Please know that:
- one of the things we work at before you talk about tough stuff is to know ensure that the processing will be tolerable…it may not be super easy, but we will make sure that the retelling doesn’t retraumatize you. If you’re gonna be retraumatized in the telling, we’ll encourage you to hold off, and we will work on the effects of the tough stuff in your life, rather than the actual painful experiences themselves
- we will help you understand and have some ways to wrap your head around the feelings that surround the memories and the issues you process. We don’t believe that it is simply and merely the vomiting out of awful stuff in itself that is transforming. .We believe that when difficult disclosure happens within a certain context,it can be profoundly healing. Sometimes that requires considerable preparation.
- we do help you pull up the stuff that you’ve conveniently swept away like dust bunnies under a bed. That can feel uncomfortable while at the same time feeling profoundly “right”…to be looking at the situation with full reality and clarity.
- Decisions that have felt confusing and ambiguous can become self evident when the entire situation is seen for what it is. Sometimes it can be difficult to see the forest for the trees, and explaining a situation to another can allow a person to hear their own full story in a new and fresh light as new ears hear it, and ask fresh questions, and provide novel reflection.
It may be uncomfortable to process, but the reward of the clarity can be remarkable.