Talking about a past trauma, a difficult relationship, or even just a bad day can be uncomfortable for some people. They may not feel like they have anyone they trust enough to confide in. They may feel like nobody cares enough to listen. Or they may believe that whatever they say will be used against them later, whether in an argument or just to be made fun of when the situation arises. Other people don’t want their family or friends to think poorly of them, or they are too shy or ashamed to reach out for help.
I felt that way once, when I was in high school. I was having a tough time trying to meet the expectations my family had for me – to get good grades so I could get into a good college so I could get a great job. It felt like too much, and I was totally overwhelmed. I felt like my parents had their own problems and all they wanted was the best for me. I felt bad telling them that I felt like I was drowning in homework and that I might never get into college. I felt very alone. One day I had to meet with the guidance counselor to talk about my post-graduation plans. Everything sort of came out in a rush – the pressure I felt, the anxiety, the fact that I felt like nobody understood what I was going through. And this counselor, her name was Miss Wendin, she just sat and listened. Whenever I paused for breath, she would nod and ask me to continue when I was ready. I talked for over an hour. When I was done, she patiently explained that what I felt was normal and that if I chose a school or major that didn’t fit, there was nothing wrong with transferring or changing majors. Knowing that I could change my mind made me feel a lot better.
That meeting changed my life. I realized that everyone needed someone to talk to, and that I could be that person. I had found what I wanted to do for a living, and I haven’t regretted a moment of it. I love being there for people, listening to their stories and helping them get back on their feet. There is something so rewarding about sharing the burdens of others, being able to revel in their joy and lessen their burdens. I have learned over the years that everyone is worthy of love, that no one has sinned so badly that they are undeserving of our compassion and kindness when they ask for help. It has been an honor and a privilege to assist this community, and I hope that I can continue to be of service for a long time to come.
If you ever need someone to talk to, I absolutely recommend counseling services. It is a way to unburden your heart without fear of judgment or reprisal, a way to heal and work through painful feelings or memories. A trusted counselor can be by your side through whatever you need.