Mental Health and Why You Should See A Therapist

Mental Health and Why You Should See A Therapist

A friend recently stated that a therapist should be assigned to everyone at birth like we assign general practitioners and that has been at the forefront of my brain ever since. Everyone needs an unbiased ear to listen to what is going on in their lives and the mental impact of those events. In understanding why you are the way that you are and the traumas that you have overcome, yes, we all have traumas whether we like to admit them or not, we grow and gain insight about ourselves and insight into others’ behavior.

When I Knew I Needed Outside Help

As a first generation American, I have been reluctant to go to therapy due to the stigma that seeking mental health can carry. In watching the dysfunctional behavior of some of my family members, thankfully, I was strong enough to see that therapy is helpful to decipher healthy decisions because sometimes loved ones’ advice is just that, advice. 

I grew up in a culture where “children should be seen and not heard.” Yes, I have had an adult tell me this line verbatim and the words have never left my mind. From a young age, I was not okay having my voice muted. Desperate for someone to look at me and ask what my thoughts were on certain subjects and situations, I vowed that when I was able I would do my part in ensuring that people of all ages, races, abilities, ethnicities and religions feel seen and heard. This desperation was a catalyst for my seeking mental help at twenty years of age.

My baby fat lasted until it was teenage fat then adult fat then mom fat … mom fat! No one can help you make a change like your children. When my son began elementary school, I knew that I did not want him to get bullied on account of my mom fat nor did I want him to start his life with my bad eating habits so once again I sought outside help. Yes, we teach him to not worry about people’s appearance but honestly, a lot of other families are not great at driving that point home. I was able to speak with my therapist to work out what was going on inside of me. Why was my body holding onto the weight? I looked at making better food choices, exercising and reading all the material in the world on weight loss, but knew that if I did not change my mental state, the fat, which is the result of a deeper issue or trauma, needed to be treated. Once I was able to work on myself as a whole, I noticed a change in my mindset. My therapist had no magic pill but what she did have was a listening ear, behavior modification techniques and most of all encouragement to keep on working to become my best self for my family. While therapy is not a cure all, I have learned so much about myself including my motivation, my strengths and my weaknesses but most of all therapy has given me permission to give myself and others GRACE.

I Do Not Have Time For Appointments

One of the best things to come out of COVID-19 is telehealth visits. We can go to our car or step to a soundproof room without having to spend the extra time in the car driving there and back. This has given me the opportunity to keep up with visits and has allowed me to not limit my choice of provider(s) as sometimes the best ones are not always right around the corner.

Once you have a relationship with a therapist and your therapist knows that you are a great client, most will make themselves available if an emergency arises. Another outcome of going to therapy as an adult is that my children see that I am talking to someone too, because we all need an unbiased ear. 

Empathy for Myself and Others

A lot of experiences and interactions are out of our control and sometimes our brains do not know how to process what happens. Therapy provides an outlet, someone to listen without judgment and can also help you think through your thought processes. Working through the thought processes also allows us to see the other person’s point of view, thus putting ourselves in their place. 

When you feel like you have no place to go, go to therapy. If you do not jive with the person, seek out someone that you like. Sometimes you will go through a few therapists until you find one that you like, just keep going.

Woman at an appointment with her therapist.

Kathy Magri
Kathy is a Metairie native who lives in River Ridge with her husband, Mike, her children, Finn and Nina, and her 3 pups and a cat, Rex, Beau, Hans & Toula. She enjoys double dating with friends on Friday or Saturday nights and brunching with her girlfriends. A lover of all people (particularly babies and children), she is usually volunteering in various organizations and supporting her children in their extracurricular activities. You may catch her reading about World War II or listening to an assortment of music. An avid traveler, she can be found in her parents’ homeland, San Pedro, Belize, enjoying time with family, snorkeling, riding golf carts around town and eating the best food in the world.


  1. Hello! While I agree that therapy is necessary for some, I disagree that everyone needs a therapist, particularly children. A hyper focus on one’s feelings and mental health is not healthy. Teaching children and adolescents (and adults) to ruminate is furthering our current mental health crisis. It’s interesting that the deeper we’ve indulged in therapy culture, the worse our mental health becomes. The data backs this up. We need to stop pathologizing everything, calling normal sadness “depression” or a breakup with a boyfriend “trauma.” This leaves no vocabulary for those who are truly suffering. We need to teach children that they are resilient and are capable of handling life’s challenges (again, there is justification for therapy for actual trauma), allow them to face struggles and failures while under our roof, and focus on reducing what the research now clearly shows is a huge factor in anxiety and depression: screen time.

    I recommend Abigail Shrier’s book “Bad Therapy: Why the Kids Aren’t Growing Up” and “The Anxious Generation: How the Great Rewiring of Childhood is Causing an Epidemic of Mental Illness” by Jonathan Haidt.

    • Hi Kim,
      Thank you for your comment. Right, everyone should be “assigned” a therapist should they need one. Also, some children do need help should they face sexual abuse or something that is too big for their little brains to comprehend. Kathy


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