3 Reasons Young People Avoid Counseling and How to Address the Issue

As mental illnesses continue to become a significant issue among the youth today, you would think that most young people do everything they can to seek professional help. Unfortunately, it is not happening despite the dangers of avoiding professional counselling services. For instance, in 2018, 458 of the 3,046 Australians that died through suicide were under 25. The high number can directly be attributed to failure to seek professional help regarding mental health issues. This article highlights common excuses the youth give for avoiding counselling and how to address the issue.

1. Fear of Judgment

Today's youth value their social circles and go to great lengths to conform. Modern society's emphasis on being bigger, faster, and stronger does not make matters any better. Therefore, youth try as much as possible to avoid counselling, which some people perceive as weakness.

Rather than be judged for being weak, most youth find it a good idea to live with their problem. However, what they do not know is that many people struggle with the same problem, and the only way to breakthrough is by cultivating a positive mindset. Counselling services provide the psychological space by emphasising that seeking professional help is a show of strength, not weakness.

2. Downplaying a Problem

The last thing that a physician wants their patient to do is self-diagnose. It is no different from counselling, but unfortunately, self-diagnosis happens a lot. This involves a person telling themself that things are okay to avoid getting professional help. In most cases, youth give the excuse when friends and family notice changes in their behaviour.

Unfortunately, the excuse is designed to redirect the concern that other people have for you, which does not help your situation. Therefore, when you tell yourself, family, and friends that ''things are not that bad,'' the chances are high that they are bad enough that you should seek counselling services. The reason is that your mental problem has reached a point where you cannot hide it anymore. It is better to tough-it-out with a therapist than handle the issue alone.

3. Misinformation

Today, teens are bombarded with loads of misinformation thanks to the proliferation of technology. All you see in movies and advertisements are mental issues being treated through hard medication and patients being admitted to mental facilities. The level of misinformation breeds fear among the youth who see counselling as a drastic change to their daily lives.

Nothing could be further from the truth because counselling can take different forms and not solely through medication and admissions. For example, a professional counsellor will tell you that a session is a collaboration between a patient and their therapist. Proper communication alleviates fear among the youth and encourages them to seek help.