You Aren't Alone In This

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I vividly remember the first time I visited the fourth floor of Alumni Hall. I was nervous and scared, but I wasn't alone. A friend sat with me and encouraged me that I was brave for being there. She was right and now almost a year later, I'm on the fourth floor of Alumni every other week to see my counselor at the Counseling Center (pro tip: good friends are ones that love you enough to force you to take care of yourself). I could give you so many words about why everyone should go to counseling, but here's a few of the reasons why counseling is always a good idea for college students.

It's free.

Counseling at MC costs exactly zero dollars. Free counseling is a resource that you won't have at any other time in your life. This gives you access to professional counselors and plenty of freedom to focus on taking care of yourself without worrying about money. Let's recap: you can pay nothing to get wise words from a kind adult who knows exactly what they're talking about. That sounds pretty cool to me.

Mental health is important.

One of the reasons I go to counseling is because I have a difficult time remembering that I can't be all of the things. It's easy to think that I can do it all, balancing school, life, and friends, without it taking a toll on me. This is a struggle for many college students. Life is unpredictable and it's easy to get overwhelmed with everything we have going on. Taking time to care for your mind is an often overlooked discipline, and counseling reminds you that you are a person worth taking care of.

Counseling isn't just for people with "problems".

I had always wrongly associated counseling with weakness. Now I realize that it takes an incredible amount of strength to go to counseling, no matter what you're going for. Counseling isn't just for people with a diagnosed mental illness or a major life crisis. It's for people who want to live life well. We all have struggles and brokenness that affect us each day. Counseling is a safe space to deal with that and to process life, feelings, and faith.

It makes you more self-aware.

Throughout the time I've spent in counseling, I have gotten to know myself on a deeper level. My counselor has helped me better understand my strengths and weaknesses, as well as what my habits are in certain situations and relationships. College is a time of change and exploration, and having a wise person to guide you through that is a huge burden lifted off of your shoulders. The Father is so creative in how He makes each one of us, and counseling is a cool way to honor that. Getting a better understanding of who you are at this time of life is a valuable and beautiful act of worship as you learn more about who you are created to be.

So who are you? If you're trying to figure that out, counseling is a place to ask questions. If you're trying to find your voice, it's a space for you to be heard. If you're trying to be strong, it's a safe place to admit your weakness. If you're trying to have it all together, it gives you permission to fall apart. The most important thing is that you are trying and you are valid and you are loved. Counseling is a deep breath and a reminder that you are never alone.

- Emma

sophomore. hugger. feeler of feelings.

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