Encouragement For Men Going To Therapy

You’re doing it, but the real work is just beginning

Photo by Japheth Mast on Unsplash

It was hard at first — really hard. You never imagined you’d find yourself in therapy. Therapy was for weaklings. Not for real men like you. At least that’s what you were told as a boy. But where are those men now? And who were they to tell you this?

You finally picked up the phone to make an appointment when the pain finally too much. You’d been drinking a lot to dull the pain, to make it to the next day. But that only helped a little.

You tried other things — intimacy, epic adventures, and travelling the world to find yourself. But after travelling the world to find yourself, you discovered you’d found nothing

So you called the therapist, and it wasn’t as bad as you thought it would be. Her voice was calming and kind, and full of empathy.

You showed up for your first appointment, wondering if you would have to lie down on a couch like they do in the movies. But you just sat down on the couch, and your therapist said that the two of you were about to embark on a journey of healing and exploration.

She said she was glad that you had the courage and humility and vulnerability to come in. That was the first time you’d heard those words associated with going to therapy. And it felt good to hear them.

Life was getting hard. Hard to keep up with everything, hard to make sense of everything, hard to figure out why you were feeling sad and lonely all the time.

Slowly, you started opening up more and more to your therapist. She helped you unpack things. She helped you go down different paths. Sheh helped you open different boxes and explore them.

You discovered there’s way more to you than you’d ever realized. Like a beautiful and complex multi-colored flower just starting to bloom.

You didn’t always feel like going to therapy. A few times, you cancelled because you just didn’t want to go. But mostly, you went.

You remember when you finally stopped trying to hold it back and let yourself cry. Big tears coming down both cheeks. And you didn’t care — because it felt amazing. The tears seemed to loosen the chains wrapped around you and suffocating you.

It’s been a year now and you wonder why you didn’t go sooner. Now is the time to lean in and double down on your efforts. A year of therapy has helped you bring things to the surface, helped you be vulnerable.

Not comes the really hard part — taking action.

Eventually, you have to pick up the phone and tell that person you’re sorry

Eventually, you have to get out of that toxic relationship

Eventually, you have to show up to your parent’s place and finally have that talk with dad

It took courage to go to therapy, and it’s taken courage to get to this point.

Continue to believe in yourself, continue to challenge yourself, and continue to be kind and loving.

The first year of therapy was amazing. Continue going, and watch it become transformative.

Andrew lives and work in San Francisco. He’s newly married, a big brother in a family with 8 kids, and an uncle to two amazing nieces. He writes about mental health, relationships, and finances.

Dad. Husband. Army vet. Enjoy running, cycling, cooking, & guitar. Sign up for my monthly humor newsletter: https://eepurl.com/hoZRwH

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