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Mental Health Awareness Week 2023

Why you don’t need to have a diagnosable mental health condition to benefit from counselling.

If you’re a social media user, even just occasionally, you might just have noticed that much of the content we see on these sites relates to mental health and wellbeing. Some of this content is really helpful and informative and, in many ways, has helped our society to demystify and be more open about how important it is to have something that can be described as good mental health. Frequently social media can also tell us how difficult it can be to have good mental health and it can be easy to slip into a mind-set of believing there is something somehow wrong with your mental health if every day you’re not jumping out of bed and punching the air in delight!

Now, more than ever, largely thanks to mainstream and social media we have become aware of the various diagnoses around mental health. OCD, anxiety, depression, Functioning Neurological Disorder, ADHD, and autism are all commonly discussed on, for example, TikTok and Instagram, with people sharing their own personal experiences of having these conditions. In some ways, this can be helpful. If we feel we may have one or more of these conditions, it’s good to know we’re not alone. Perhaps we can pick up some new ways of managing a condition that affects our mental health from people we see on social media.

However… it is also important that we remember that, as human beings, we experience a very wide range of feelings and emotions in response to our direct experiences of the world and how we see other events unfold around us. This does not mean we need a diagnosis of a mental health condition. Ever watched the news or scrolled social media and ended up feeling the world is a doomed? Too much exposure to bad news can very quickly lower your mood and make you feel hopeless. None of this is to trivialise genuine mental health conditions. It is important that we try to find ways to support our mental health, whether or not we have something diagnosable.

As an organisation, MYPAS is here to support young people with their mental health and we want people to know that you do not need a diagnosable condition to get benefits from coming along to counselling. You can expect when you access counselling at MYPAS to be treated with kindness, empathy, understanding and compassion. Of course, if you do have a diagnosis you are also very welcome to request counselling. Counselling can be a wonderful space for you to explore all aspects of your wellbeing, and to look at ways to develop resilience and gain a deeper understanding of yourself.

As counsellors we are used to working with young people who feel they might have a mental health condition, however we are not qualified to assess or diagnose anyone. We very much take the approach that we work with you however you present yourself and value all parts of what you choose to bring along and share with us.