The job of a family counselor is very relevant in today’s world. Numerous people have concerns that have to be tackled yet cannot do so by themselves healthily and positively. This is where the family counselor comes in. This professional aims to help other people when they need someone impartial and guide them as they work through their issues.
The family counselor mediates for married couples or members of the family so that he can assist them in overcoming emotional and mental problems that may have rooted in the home. The family counselor can diagnose an illness and offer effective treatment plans that can help the family come to a resolution.
Generally, family counselors must manage people who visit their offices after a concrete diagnosis has been made. The general responsibilities include meeting and talking with the members of the family, coming up with a diagnosis on their emotional or mental problem, and efficiently managing them for the long term.
A family counselor is a person who has an expansive range of duties that are related to their profession. The first obligation of a family counselor is to make contact with their clients. His clients will find the counselor and the counselor then decides to meet with his client and begin the sessions. This is the first step in the client-counselor relationship.
The family counselor should also gather details from his clients to appropriately diagnose and manage their illnesses. This involves talking with the clients and members of the family to identify the concerns that need to be tackled in the counseling sessions. This form of communication can happen through telephone conversations, face-to-face meetings, and emails. The counselor should be some sort of detective to efficiently collect relevant information to allow him to help his client effectively.
One crucial duty that family counselors do on an everyday basis is counseling. The sessions are there with the clients, and the counselor talks about their concerns and tries to come up with a workable solution. Counseling sessions are typically face-to-face discussions. However, with the continuing threat of being affected by the pandemic, among other reasons, sessions can also be done through chat or video conferencing.
Documenting or keeping records is another vital obligation of family counselors. They should keep thorough and precise records for every client. Records must include information from fellow counselors about the client and personal details taken from sessions and endorsements. It is also important that family counselors keep these reports private and well-arranged to recover any time they are necessary for the future.
Family counselors are also obliged to prescribe treatment for their clients. When a person has been diagnosed with an illness or condition, family counselors should then identify the best methods to utilize. Referrals and counseling are two major ways that family counselors manage their clients.
Finally, other family counselors are also responsible for providing lectures and workshops on different family counseling subjects and issues. Numerous family counselors are respected and admired in a specific area of their field. They will discuss these subjects so that other counselors and interested groups can learn more regarding certain counseling matters.
Family Counselor Traits
There are several vital traits that every family counselor should have. The primary trait is compassion. The family counselor is tasked to listen to his client’s personal and emotional concerns, which is why he must be compassionate.
Superb listening skills are also a must-have trait for a family counselor. A major part of the counselor’s profession is to get involved in the sessions and discuss concerns with clients, so he must be an effective listener.
Family counselors who are structured and organized will also find that their jobs are easier and less daunting. Family counselors must engage in a different evaluation, writing, and record-keeping, so having organizational skills is crucial. Those skilled at maintaining a clean and organized office where records can easily be found will know that this trait is very beneficial in their profession.
Family counselors must also possess a strong commitment to helping other people. They should be individuals whom clients can go to aid them in working out their issues. They must strive to produce the best outcomes for their clients if they are willing and eager to help their clients overcome their daily challenges.
Lastly, family counselors must be equipped with great writing abilities. Numerous counselors meet with their clients and eventually write assessments on them. This is the reason why they must have experience and skills in writing.
A family counselor is a person who does much more than merely listening to people’s concerns and problems. He discusses and talks with his client, diagnoses his client’s illness or condition, and comes up with effective management techniques that will help alleviate his client’s concerns and problems. For those who think they have the compassion, commitment, and eagerness to reach out and help others, perhaps becoming a family counselor is a perfect option.
Counseling, talk therapy, psychotherapy, or just therapy – regardless of its name, mental health counseling can be beneficial for people who are struggling with their anxieties, challenges, emotional distress, and mental health issues.
Counseling can help improve indications of several mental health disorders. In counseling, people also discover strategies for managing symptoms that might not be resolved with immediate treatment. Studies reveal that the benefits of counseling are more longstanding compared to medication therapy along. Taking medications can decrease some of the physical symptoms of mental health illnesses, but counseling educates people on the concept and skills that help tackle the symptoms by themselves. Even after the counseling ends, these skills exist, and indications may continually alleviate, making it more possible for people to undergo more treatment.
Mental health concerns are not uncommon. Present statistics document that one in every five American adults live with a mental health illness, and 1 in 25 live with a severe mental health disorder. However, only an estimated 40% of these individuals seek help. When these mental health conditions are ignored, they often worsen and could produce more deleterious effects on your physical and mental well-being. They could also result in:
Increased likelihood of developing a health condition
Inability to go to work or school
Difficulty in taking care of family and other relationships
Suicide is the second most common cause of mortality for individuals in America between 10 and 34 years old. Furthermore, 90% of those who died due to suicide in America suffered from a mental health disorder.
Do I Need Counseling?
Telling a loved one or significant other that they should visit a counselor or need counseling can be difficult, particularly because of the stigma that goes along with it. It can be devastating to see a loved one go through mental health conditions, but people must seek counseling help independently – unless they put their lives and others in danger.
Reassuring a person you care about to seek potential counseling options and even spending time with them to look for competent counselors is typically a wonderful way to give support. Those who feel pressured into counseling may be reluctant and find it difficult to exert effort and make positive changes.
Counseling can aid people in working through their concerns that could result in suicidal thoughts, but it is typically not the most suitable choice for those in crisis. If you are one of these individuals, you can seek help immediately by contacting your local suicide hotline. You may also be urged to visit the emergency room nearest you.
Additionally, counseling offers a secure space to open up about life’s challenges like loss, grief, parenting issues, breakups, and family conflicts, among others.
Should I Visit A Counselor?
You may need to think twice before deciding that you need counseling. You may also want to take a step backward and contemplate if time, lifestyle modifications, or the presence of family and friends alleviates whatever you are going through.
The American Psychological Association recommends contemplating counseling when something causes anguish and disrupts some aspects of life, especially when:
The problem causes humiliation or pushes you to avoid other people
Dealing with the matter will cause you to spend at least an hour daily
The issue has deleteriously impact work, school, and your relationships
The difficulty you are going through causes a reduction in the quality of your life
If you have any of the feelings listed below to the point that they disturb your daily life, counseling may help you decrease these effects. It is particularly crucial to consider going to a counselor if you feel dominated by symptoms or if they trigger suicidal thoughts or self-harm.
Hopelessness. Feeling pessimistic, losing motivation, or feeling like the future is gloomy, can signify depression or another mental health illness. Feeling hopeless often, particularly after experiencing difficulty, is usual. However, if it continues for some time, it could result in suicidal thoughts.
Social Withdrawal. A lot of people feel good when they have time for themselves. Timid individuals may require more time alone compared to others. However, if you feel stressed when surrounded by other people or anxious around others, counseling can definitely help you deal with and acknowledge your emotions.
Fatigue. This physical indication is frequently due to mental health problems, and this could signify depression as well. Fatigue causes you to feel frequently sleepy than usual or have difficulty getting up from bed in the morning.
Improper Anger Or Hatred. Everybody feels mad at times. Passing anger isn’t even essentially damaging. Seeking help to cope with these emotions might be a great idea when they do not seem to subside, are severe when compared to the situation itself, or if they cause you to act violently.
Invasive Or Anxious Thoughts. It’s common to be worried about things once in a while, but when this worry disturbs some major aspects of your daily routine or leads to physical symptoms, counseling can help you work through them.
Counseling can positively remarkably change your life. Ultimately, only you can decide whether you need it or not. So take your time, read up and learn more about it, and finally, reach out to one of the counselors near you.
When I was a child, I experienced various forms of abuse at my biological parents’ hands.
My father would always get violent whenever he was drunk – which was every day – and would always throw whatever he could get his hands on towards my mother and me. I remembered dreading to come home every day from school because I knew that it would be the same scenario that I would see and experience again.
My father eventually died during a messed-up robbery that he planned with his friends. I did not cry during his funeral because I thought that I was finally free from pain. My mother even sold our house and moved us to another state to forget my painful childhood. Then, she opened a small business, but it was in 2008, and you already know what happened to most businesses around that time. They all sunk, including my mother’s. Before declaring bankruptcy, though, Mom managed to buy a trailer truck that would serve as our temporary home while she still hadn’t gone back on her feet.
Living The Trailer Life
My mother’s boss allowed her to park our trailer truck at the restaurant’s back where she was working. Whenever there was leftover food, she would bring some to me, so I was never hungry. However, one day, my mother told me that she had a new man who wanted to marry her. Of course, I was happy because I thought it meant that I could live in a real house again. It did not matter that I did not know who this man was; I just thought I would be good, and he would love me like his own. But then, Mom said that her boyfriend did not want me in their lives, so I had to stay in the truck. Before leaving, she promised to visit me as often as possible, considering she would still be working at the restaurant.
I felt heartbroken, for sure, but what could a young girl do? I was not even invited to my mother’s wedding; one of her coworkers just showed me the pictures.
As most promises went, my mother broke hers after a month. I would usually see her in the truck after school, but she just stopped coming one day. I saw her manager outside once and asked about my mother, and the lady looked at me with pity as she told me that Mom relocated to Germany with her new husband.
I cried for days because of that, but I felt angry with myself for doing so. I realized that my mother was worse than my father. Dad was a drunkard and violent, but at least he did not run away from responsibilities. Meanwhile, my mother could not even say goodbye to me.
After that, I decided to call social services for myself. I willingly went into the foster care system because that was my only choice, and I did not want to be homeless. I guess I still had a guardian angel somewhere because I only had to stay in the system for a year before an elderly coupled adopted me after learning about my childhood and the depression that I got afterward. They vowed to help me by bringing me to the best depression counselors in the country and giving me the life that my parents never could.
What type of therapy is used for depression?
Over the years, more and more ways of treating depression have been discovered and effectively used. Treatment will differ from case to case as causes and patients may be unique from each other. The most common types of therapy used for treating depression are behavioral therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, Dialectical Behavior therapy, psychodynamic therapy, interpersonal therapy, and psychotherapy, which also have different forms such as individual therapy, family group therapy, and couples’ therapy.
What are the four types of depression?
Many different types of depression can affect other people. The four most common types of depression are Major, Chronic, Seasonal, and Manic. Major depression is a severe form of depression where you most likely are constantly depressed, and you might have lost interest in daily life. Meanwhile, chronic depression lasts the longest as it can stay with you for an average of a year, and in some cases, it can go longer. When you have manic or bipolar depression, you might feel extreme manias and extreme lows or both at the same time. Lastly, seasonal depression is a major depression that happens from time to time.
Can therapy be bad for you?
According to a study conducted by Scott Lilienfeld, professor of Psychology from Emory University, a few therapy forms could do more harm than good. These therapy types were found to be harmful in their ways:
It is common to experience mental health issues, and we must reach out and ask for help. So when you are experiencing the following: Inability to work or study, difficulty in maintaining relationships, taking care of your children or yourself, an increase in health issues, and even suicidal tendencies, you will need to go and make sure that you can get the counseling that you will need.
What are the four types of talk therapy?
Talk therapy is a treatment that requires a patient to talk about their traumas, experiences, thoughts, and opinions. You will generally have to talk your heart out, and the therapist will guide you through the conversation. The four therapy types are cognitive behavioral therapy, guided self-help, interpersonal therapy, and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. Of course, there are more talking therapy types, depending on what your therapist views as the most effective for you.
What is the best natural antidepressant?
There are several different natural antidepressants that you can find almost anywhere. Omega 3 found in fish can be a natural antidepressant. Also, food with zinc and folate can be another antidepressant that would not require much of a budget. Of course, it is still most recommended that we consult a doctor before we go into natural treatment methods to get the most effective treatment that we need.
How can you avoid mental illness?
You should surround yourself with people who are focused on the same things as you. These people also have to be supportive and understanding of your emotions. We must be surrounded by like-minded people who do not invalidate how we feel because this helps us process our emotions more healthily. Also, make sure that you give yourself time to have fun. Do the things you love, and make sure that you also take a step back from making you stressed. In short, put yourself first and think of what is best for you.
Does talk therapy work?
Several studies have been published explaining how talk therapy helps, and it shows us that, yes, talk therapy is a helpful tool in treating depression. A person can express themselves in a space where there is no judgment or prejudice. So make sure that you can talk to a therapist who understands what you are going through.
How do you know when someone has a mental illness?
Some signs and symptoms can point to a person being mentally ill. You have to make sure that you can spot these signs because this might help save the lives of the people you love. Make sure to watch out for withdrawal, loss of interest in daily activities, excessive feelings of happiness, frustration, fear, anger, and sadness, inability to concentrate, and they might become more introverted and quiet. There are also cases when a person who has been quiet and withdrawn for an extended period suddenly goes back to “normal”; they might have just decided to end their life, and they are making sure that their last day is a happy day. So check up on the people you love.
What can replace antidepressants?
It is very much advised to be taking antidepressants and going to therapy to assure that progress is happening and that you do not revert to your depressed state. However, suppose you are looking for more ways to take antidepressants without taking more medication. In that case, you can always go for natural antidepressants such as different herbs and vitamins and minerals like zinc, folate, and Omega-3 fatty acid.
Do Plants help with depression?
There are ongoing researches that are suggesting that being surrounded by plants does not just help with air purification, oxygen production, and beautification. Still, it can also bring a calming effect on a person’s mood, stress, and even blood pressure. So try and surround yourself with bamboo palms, chamomile, basil, aloe vera, Chinese evergreens, and ferns. These plants can help you with your depression and more.
What should you not say to a mentally ill person?
When you know someone is going through something or if you know they have been diagnosed with a mental illness, make sure that you do not say “it is all in your head,” “others have it worse,” “it’s all part of God’s plan,” “you have a good life, you are always happy,” and “this too shall pass.” Make sure that you do not invalidate how they feel. Try and ask if they need your advice or if they need you to listen. This way, you can avoid giving out unsolicited advice and hurt the feelings of your loved ones. Put yourself in their situation and their shoes. If it were you, what would you not want to hear?
How do I heal myself mentally?
You have to make sure that you start to do things that make you feel good, making you feel happy and fulfilled. Identify what is causing you distress and pinpoint the people and situations in your life that are toxic. When you do, cut them out of your life for good. Do not put yourself in situations where you are being manipulated, invalidated, or abused. Make sure that you value yourself and that you are taking care of yourself. Surround yourself with supportive people and understanding. Be with people who love you and who do not feed you with toxic and harmful energy.
Where can I take someone mentally unstable?
You can take them to many different facilities that can help them through their struggles. You can also make sure that you take them to a place where they feel relaxed and share their thoughts and feelings. You should take them to a place where they can get the help they require, such as mental health facilities and therapy clinics.
What’s good for mental health?
The best thing for your mental health is to cut off the toxic people in your life. Make sure that you are surrounded by people who love you and support you. This way, you are filled with positivity and motivation. You can also try and do the things you love, and you can try to find new hobbies. You have to make sure your body is healthy, so your mind is healthy as well. Put yourself first. It is not selfish; it loves yourself.
I am already 32 years old. My past is way behind me. I currently work as a depression counselor, given that I have seen the significance of becoming one during my troubled years. I never heard from my mother again, but I finally made peace with that years ago. Now, I strive to help young people deal with their mental issues and situations to grab better opportunities for themselves.
In determining our mental health issues, we know that we have to rely on our symptoms. That way, we can easily know what causes the emotional and mental pain we might be dealing with. Often, we rely on our senses and perception that things are not okay because they are unsolvable and out of control. And sometimes, we believe that our psychological aspect is struggling because we can’t act accordingly. Even our thoughts and emotions get a little too messed up that we begin to change our behaviors and engage in a habit that we once never considered.
However, how certain can we be in terms of determining our mental health symptoms? What makes us think that a particular headache, fatigue, or lack of concentration means more than meets the eye? What are the assurances of knowing that we might be dealing with a mild mental health problem or an already diagnosable disorder? Honestly, the process is way too complicated.
Luckily, despite the struggle in knowing and deeply understanding the emotional and mental condition, we can rely on professional help. These experts have this method that guarantees to assist us in knowing more about our mental illness. With that, I bet this article with a lot of fervently asked questions can help us know more.
What does the Beck Anxiety Inventory measure?
The Beck Anxiety Inventory is a 21-question multiple-choice self-report inventory that assesses and measures adults’ and children’s worrying habits, fears, and physiological symptoms related to anxiety.
In general, BAI evaluates anxiety and depression symptoms, including mood swings, guilt, punishment, self-accusation, self-dissatisfaction, sense of failure, pessimism, excessive crying, agitations or irritability, self-dislike or self-hate, social withdrawal, indecisiveness, body image change, insecurities, and suicidal ideas.
How do you score the Beck Anxiety Inventory?
Scoring Beck Anxiety Inventory starts with adding the values for each item or question. It should yield a total score for all 21 symptoms that ranges between 0 and 63 points. The range is classified as a “Minimal” level of anxiety when the total score of 0 – 7. When interpreted as an 8 – 15, it is classified as mild, 16 – 25 to moderate. But when the total score is 26 – 63, that is identified as severe.
Who can administer the Beck Anxiety Inventory?
The Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) can be self-administered. However, it is more convenient and somehow reliable when administered verbally by a trained interviewer. That way, there is more consistency in the answers to determine the descriptive symptom of anxiety.
But of course, this method can only become reliable when the patient tells the truth about what he is emotionally and mentally going through. Because once there is an inconsistency with the answers, the BAI might not guarantee a reliable data source.
What is the difference between BDI and BDI II?
The first and original version of BDI was based on patient description and clinical observations. Meanwhile, the BDI‐II contains items that reflect the affective, somatic, cognitive, and vegetative symptoms of depression.
How reliable is the Beck Depression Inventory?
Mental health experts positively acknowledge the criterion validity of the BDI-II. It is considered a reliable and substantial measure in identifying real-time characteristic attitudes and symptoms of people with depression. This method is beneficial since many experts widely used it and consider it a well-validated tool for measuring the severity of an individual’s anxiety.
How do I reference the Beck Depression Inventory?
You can reference the Beck Depression Inventory from the Manual for the Beck Depression Inventory-II.
Is the Beck Depression Inventory copyright?
The BDI was copyrighted in 1978, a few years after it was revised in 1971. The test is widely known for synchronized validity of measuring individuals’ attitudes, characteristics, and depression symptoms.
What type of scale is the Beck Depression Inventory?
The main design of the 21-item self-report inventory of BDI-II aims to assess the cause and severity of symptoms of depression in the last two weeks. Each item is rated on a 4-point type scale that ranges from 0 to 3.
What is the highest level of anxiety?
Honestly, it depends. The Anxiety levels are characteristically classified by the intensity of impairment and distress an individual experienced. It goes into four categories which include mild anxiety or the sense of nervousness or uneasiness. Usually, an individual gets through with this phase in no time. Then there is moderate anxiety, where symptoms are more frequent and persistent. But despite that, an individual can still deal with life functions properly. Then there is severe anxiety, where the person deals with excessive, intense, and persistent fear and worry about everyday situations and nothing in particular. Lastly, panic-level anxiety can have physical manifestations that interrupt an individual’s life in general.
What are signs of bad anxiety?
Some of the signs of bad anxiety include restlessness or nervousness, increased heart rate. There’s hyperventilation, sweating, trembling, and feeling weak or tired. Also, there is trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present fears and worries.
Who can use the Beck Depression Inventory?
The Beck Depression Inventory’s latest version is designed for individuals aged 13 and above. It is composed of items concerning symptoms of depression such as irritability and hopelessness and cognitions with feelings of guilt or being punished. It also applies to individuals who suffer from physical symptoms such as weight loss, fatigue, and lack of interest in things they once enjoyed.
Is the Beck Anxiety Inventory free?
Not entirely. Fortunately, there is free public access to the Beck Anxiety Inventory scoring form and assessment. It is a self-reported tool that uses self-report questionnaires to determine the presence of depression or anxiety on a patient.
With all the benefits of coping methods, we can use to guarantee ourselves better and functioning mental health, the struggle usually starts with knowing what is there to address. Thus, with the help of this anxiety-related inventory or testing, our chances of knowing more about our condition give us comfort and hope that things can get better once we understand what we are dealing with.
PTSD is a silent killer. You can pass someone by on the street and be oblivious to the fact that a debilitating psychological problem terrorizes them. According to statistics, more than eight million Americans aged 18 and above have post-traumatic stress disorder. It affects everyone at some point in their lives. This disorder is for military personnel and veterans, although mental illness is often associated with them.
For most people, stress is an everyday thing that comes and goes with a little de-stressing. However, post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental illness working differently. Characterized by feelings of fear, anxiety, avoidance, and having intrusive thoughts, PTSD triggers a fight-or-flight response in many people.
It develops in an individual who experiences significant trauma and stress, like military combat, natural disasters, death of a loved one, victims of crimes and abuse, etc. And because PTSD often relives a person’s worst nightmare for them, it may be challenging to live their daily lives and almost impossible to recover.
Over the years, as more and more people begin to struggle with the disorder, physicians and medical researchers continue to develop various treatment approaches to help PTSD patients. PTSD group therapy has become one of the most common forms of psychotherapy in treating traumatized individuals.
Group therapy allows people with the same disorder to participate and help relieve each other from their difficult situations. Each group consists of no more than 15 willing participants, and a licensed mental health professional presides over each session.
What is the best therapy for PTSD?
The best treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder is psychotherapy. There are a few different types of psychotherapy in the market. Evidence suggests that CBT or Cognitive Behavior Therapy is the most effective treatment plan for the disorder.
It is a trauma-focused technique wherein a licensed mental health professional recognizes the patient’s cognitive patterns and helps them understand their thoughts and behaviors.
Is group therapy effective for PTSD?
According to studies, people living with PTSD who underwent group therapy significantly improved with their condition. The promising findings of group therapy as a treatment plan for post-traumatic stress disorder have made it a popular choice and widely practiced methodology.
What are the four major clusters of PTSD?
Diagnosing PTSD symptoms is generally characterized and group into four major clusters:
intrusive memories, which may involve recalling the traumatic events or experiences through dreams and flashbacks,
avoidance, whether it be their thoughts or even people, places, etc.,
changes in thoughts and emotions, often negative, and
elevated arousal and emotional reactivity, which may include being insomniac.
How many therapy sessions are needed for PTSD?
The recommended length of therapy treatment for PTSD usually lasts six to 12 weeks or could be longer. Generally, each session should be around 60 to 120 minutes, and the meeting should be weekly or as needed.
What are the 17 PTSD symptoms?
There are 17 common PTSD symptoms, such as:
physical reactions that include sweating or nauseating symptoms
general disinterest in life or activities
nightmares and flashbacks
development of anxiety
self-destructive behavior like substance abuse
avoidance of certain activities, people, places, etc. or isolation
detaching one’s self from reality
hypervigilance or feeling on edge
difficulty in expressing emotions
quickly becoming flustered or scared
inability to concentrate or focus on specific tasks and activities
failure to remember details of the traumatic events
suicidal feelings or tendencies
What happens if PTSD is left untreated?
Post-traumatic stress disorder is already a debilitating mental illness. If left untreated, it can bring more problems and challenges. Other psychological conditions, such as depression, anxiety, and substance abuse, may develop. Unable to recover from PTSD will significantly lower a person’s quality of life.
Is PTSD considered a disability?
Mental illnesses are already classified as disabilities. Therefore, PTSD may be considered as one. Suppose the disorder symptoms start to worsen and hamper an individual from doing the daily routine. In that case, the person may go to a psychiatrist to prove the disorder’s debilitating problems.
Once verified, an individual is entitled to disability benefits such as discounts on medicines and safe space for them in public places.
How do you heal from PTSD?
Many treatment options are available, such as psychotherapy, exposure therapy, rehabilitation, and medication management. However, the recovery process for PTSD is a long and winding path.
How do you get approved for PTSD?
As mentioned before, a certified and licensed mental health professional, specifically a psychiatrist, must diagnose an individual with PTSD. The four significant clusters of the disorder are considered, and a patient must exhibit at least 1-2 symptoms each under the categories.
What are the three E’s of trauma?
The three E’s of trauma are mainly:
The event, of the traumatic circumstances,
Experience, in regards to how the individual perceives and processes the event, and
From the name itself, the effect is about the outcome of the first two E’s mentioned.
What does a PTSD attack feel like?
Signs of a PTSD attack varies per person. It may come without warning, yet it can gradually grow from feelings of fear or anxiety for others. You may watch out for physical symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, and heart palpitations. At some point, you may also lose consciousness.
Can PTSD cause personality changes?
One of the clusters of PTSD is changes in thoughts and emotions linked with personality. Those with PTSD are at high-risk of personality changes. While some even develop a personality disorder like antisocial personality disorder or schizophrenia.
What triggers PTSD attacks?
Many things can trigger post-traumatic stress disorder in people. These may include serious events such as death, war, crimes, and abuse and are often called external triggers. On the other hand, there are also internal triggers like excessive worrying, memories, and anger.
The sound of being in a room full of individuals struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder seems incredibly intimidating at first. But studies show the efficacy rate of group therapy is higher than expected. Many people with PTSD show vast improvement after committing to attending group therapies.
Living alone with trauma is burdensome. But with group therapy, individuals find validation in peers battling with PTSD as well. There is comfort in knowing that you are not suffering alone. It is genuinely validating to know that others are also going through it and experiencing how it feels.
Group therapy offers a sense of security and safety, serving as a solid rock of support for PTSD. It is an avenue for the victims to freely and openly share their hardships, confide in their situations with no judgment. Group therapy also facilitates the exchange of ideas, skills, and knowledge to cope with the disorder.
If you are interested, you may check with your current therapist or mental health practitioner for PTSD group therapies near your area. Your therapist will be able to match you with a perfect group with the right course of treatment.
My big brother Johnny had been the glue that kept our family together. Though there was a 13-year age gap between us, I could remember a time when our home got seized by the bank because our parents could not pay for it anymore. We stayed in a motel for a few months, and Mom and Dad were on the brink of getting divorced because they were blaming each other for our financial worries. But Johnny told them to stop fighting and that he would look for a part-time job to bring food to the table.
Johnny was only 17 years old back then, but he already knew how to handle our situation better than our parents. The family finances eventually got sorted out when Dad’s business venture kicked off, so we managed to get our house back. Still, even my parents were forever grateful for my big brother acting like an adult when they couldn’t.
By the time I entered first grade, my big brother already went off to the community college. He remained close to us and visited home almost every weekend. If Johnny couldn’t go home, he would often call and say that he missed being with us. However, my brother started to change when he met Jenna.
Johnny’s Toxic Relationship
Even at a young age, I already knew that Jenna was bad news. She acted and looked like those mean girls in the TV shows that Mom used to watch. When Johnny introduced her to the family for the first time, Jenna kept her chin up the entire time. She wasn’t blatantly rude to us, but it was obvious even for me that she didn’t even want to meet us. After dinner, Jenna asked my brother if they could go back to their apartment, even though the initial plan was to spend the night in our house.
When the couple was already gone, I overheard Mom complaining to Dad. “Did you see how that girl picked on her plate as if the food I made was not palatable at all? And Johnny couldn’t see that she almost didn’t want to talk to us!”
Trying to appease Mom, Dad said, “Please calm down. What can we do about it? Our son is already an adult. We can only hope that he would realize it soon.”
Well, my parents’ wish didn’t come into reality as soon as they hoped. Three years later, Johnny and Jenna were still together. I could count the number of times when the girl visited with my brother with my two hands throughout those years. Each time, she only stayed for a few hours and made up excuses to cut the visit short. And when Johnny was with us, Jenna kept calling him, asking him when he’d be back.
Before their fourth anniversary, Johnny came home again to tell my parents that he wanted to propose to Jenna. That’s when the floodgates erupted, and Mom exclaimed, “Marry that girl?! You must be out of your mind!” Then, she proceeded to rant about the awful things that she noticed Jenna do.
Instead of listening, though, my brother got up and accused Mom and Dad of not giving his soon-to-be fiancée a chance to show her true colors. But Mom heatedly said, “Oh, we saw her true colors all right, and they weren’t pretty.”
That was the last time that Johnny went back home. After some time, we heard that he got married to Jenna, and they didn’t even bother to invite us to the wedding.
The Fall Of A Toxic Relationship
When I was already in middle school, I came home to see a new car parked at our garage. Upon entering the house, I saw my brother crying in my mother’s arms. He looked much older than his age, with gray hair peeking through the black mass. When I asked what happened, everyone told me that Johnny caught his wife having an affair at their house. He left and filed for divorce on the same day before going back to our home.
Johnny uttered, “I should have listened when you all said that marrying Jenna was an awful decision. Look where it got me now.”
But instead of blaming my big brother for the fall of his toxic relationship, we helped him get back on his own feet. Dad sent movers to the house that Johnny shared with Jenna, and they proceeded to put it on sale. My brother also hired the best lawyer in town to ensure that he wouldn’t need to pay for alimony. In the end, she never got a dime from Johnny. (Justice was served!)
At home, the entire family focused on my brother’s mental health. We went on trips and ate together and spent most nights reconnecting with each other. Johnny also took on the job of driving me to and from school, and I could not be happier to bond wit my big brother. During one of those school outings, he even met my beautiful Math teacher, Ms. Abby. Though Johnny said it was too early to find love again, we could see them having a bright future together.
The family is the basic unit of society. No one is born into this world without a family. We learn the ways of the world from the very people we learn how to walk and talk. Basically, everything that we are is founded on how we were raised. However, we all know that not all families are the same. This means that some people grow up a lot differently from others.
Do you know what I realized during this lockdown? It takes so much time to heal wounds of the heart, mind, and soul. I will be two years separated from this monster my children call “dad,” but the pain of his torture on me is still there. Every time I see him, I panic. I have difficulty breathing, and my nerves are all acting up. I know he cannot hit me anymore or cannot threaten me. We are past that. It’s just that my body is still traumatized from everything, and no matter how much I try to hide it, it shows. The bastard is even taunting me. It seems that he enjoys seeing me flinch and suffer.
Since the start of the year 2020, there are a lot of disasters that the world experienced only in its first quarter. There is the sudden eruption of Taal Volcano, Australian and Amazon bushfire, earthquakes in Turkey and the Caribbean, devastating floods in Indonesia, Ukrainian jetliner crash in Iran, and communal riots in Delhi. But the worst phenomenon that until now the world keeps on battling is the spread of the Coronavirus.
What Started All Of This?
It has been almost half a year since the outbreak started in China last 2019 of November. It was believed to originate from a small market that supplies all kinds of animals, endangered and domestic, that was served for human consumption. The Coronavirus, in particular, was believed to come from bats. That is why when people found out that a restaurant offered a soup with bats on it, they immediately assumed it was the first case of COVID-19.
From then on, the spread went through different countries, infecting and killing different people worldwide. It was seemed like an isolated incident at first affecting a few couples of individuals in a particular province of Wuhan, China. However, the virus’s unnoticeable symptoms, unfortunately, spiraled into a global disaster. And the worst part, there is no cure for the spreading diseases yet. And people can only flatten the curve by practicing social distancing and frequent hand washing.
Why Does It Cause Mental Torture?
It is physically impossible to go any reputable news source without hearing or seeing updates about the current state of the outbreak. People worldwide get bombarded with anxiety-inducing reports about the virus’s latest infection, number and death tolls. It creates mental torture because people can no longer think properly due to fear. There is the worry of getting infected and being unable to make it, and an emotional burden to infecting other people, especially an individual’s loved one. There is a concern about living life with uncertainty.
The global pandemic changed the lives of millions of people around the world and left them unable to do what they usually do. People are now trying to get by with the new normal. That is where they keep their mask on and sanitize their hands frequently. There is a restriction on how people should socialize as well.
What Expectations Are There?
People are required to quarantine or socially distance themselves from others to stop or lessen the spread of the virus. However, not all individuals are eager to listen and follow such a protocol. Thus, the increase of COVID-19 related cases went up. However, some experts already pointed out that there is no way people would pay much attention to the virus spread because they are too focused on economic stability. Therefore, the option of stopping the disease may end up in horrific costs.
Way back in history, when the world suffered from a pandemic, the government’s health experts used to do nothing but to focus on finding a cure. That is because it knows people will never listen. That is where the term “herd immunity” originated. It is the process of allowing the spread of the virus (intentionally or not) to determine who are the ones that can recover from the infection without doing anything at all. It would be assumed that individuals who survived the virus would develop antibodies that will support the future advancement of the COVID-19 cure.
Going back to the question “when will the pandemic ends?” the uncertainty is on its max level. Apart from the growing number of infections, there is still no sign of developed cure from the medical fields. Therefore, a convenient way to fight this global pandemic is to continue quarantine and social distancing until an effective vaccine can be developed.