Why replacing professional help with free chat sessions with your pals is a recipe for disaster.
YOUR FRIENDS SHOULD NOT BE YOUR THERAPISTS.
Okay that’s a bit harsh but it’s true. That’s not to say that you should not be vulnerable and transparent with your friends but they should not act as replacements for professionally trained help. For anyone who has experienced therapy you know how invaluable that relationship can be. And for those who haven’t, we’ll try to put into words our appreciation for it.
Even Kanye has gotten involved in the conversation and publicly stated “I use the world as the therapist” and doesn’t feel the need to pay someone to do that. He did get a lot of hate for this in his comments as people felt this degrades actual therapists who spend years studying and training to do what they do.
Why Friends Should Never Be Therapists
Friends are untrained, biased, and it frankly, using them for therapy makes the friendship feel like work. Treating your friends like your therapist makes them feel used and unappreciated, especially when you don’t reciprocate the kindness. It’s a lose-lose situation because they feel used and you’re not getting the right advice or solutions. This turns your friendships into a relationship where one person is always venting or complaining which is exhausting. Therapists are PAID professionals who have been trained to help people and have tools and resources available to them to deal with all the negative things they hear at work.They are legitimately paid to deal with your shit so do not expect free sessions from your friends.
Alternative: Ways to do your own therapy at home.
We acknowledge that having access to professional help is a privilege and not a right. So we've found some great alternatives that are cheap and cheerful. We both use these ourselves and find them very affective. Check out the links below to some of our favourite online tools.
Youtube mindfulness exercises. Try this meditation from Goodful.
Books (even free audio books) that directly teach therapeutic methods or just make you calm & happy. Read the Tao of Pooh.
Journaling. Pretend to be your own therapist. What would you tell someone else to do in this scenario?
Listen to your FAVE SELF HELP PODCAST. Or even just a podcast by some cool twenty something girls who have probably experienced SO MANY of the same things that you have and have many of the same worries
Free local hotlines & helplines.
Like this topic? Check out episode 2 of My Twenty Somethings Podcast for more.