What Going To Therapy Is Really Like

black woman in therapy - what therapy is really like

So I’ve been going to therapy for about a month now.

I began this year with a pledge to myself: I wanted to stop talking about how I wanted to be happy and instead focus on actually being happy.

It was time to take the reins of my life and stop waiting on other people to help me feel happy, content and well-nourished. I had to do it for myself. It was possible, but I am the only one who can take that first step.

So I called my insurance company, double-checked my coverage, gritted my teeth and booked my appointment. And then resisted the urge to call and cancel because “Wait, I’m not crazy….am I?”

The stigma of therapy almost caused me to miss out on a wonderful blessing. If you admit to (the wrong) people that you’re struggling and you don’t think you can manage your mental health alone, they’ll come up with a million reasons why you don’t need help.

“But you have a great life! What could be wrong with you?” 

“But only crazy people go to therapy. Are you crazy?”  

“You just need to pray. Have you talked to a pastor?” 

“Everybody’s stressed. What makes you think you’re so special?”

“It will pass. You’re just in a busy season of life right now.” 

I’ve heard all of these things and more in discussing with people my desire to go to therapy. (I heard the first one the most frequently. Everyone assumes my life is perfect, but if I’m the one drowning….don’t tell me how well I can swim, you know?)

Here’s what going to therapy is really like: We sit in my therapist’s office and…we talk. We talk about my week, about the things I’m struggling with, about the areas in my life I’d like to see improvement. We talk about my strengths. We talk about my victories. We talk about the people who have shaped me and the woman I would like to be in the future.

What therapy has done for me is given myself permission to be me, unapologetically. As I dig deeper and discover my strength and learn to position my weakness in a way that doesn’t harm me, I’m learning to love ME. All of me. The flaws I carry, the scars etched into my memory, the quirks that make me different from anyone else on the planet. All of that is more precious to me now that it was a month ago.

After I wrote the post about making my first therapy appointment, so many women reached out to me. “Thank you for sharing this,” most of them said. A few even said they were going to make an appointment with a therapist and two actually followed up with me to share that they went!

Investing in yourself is priceless. This isn’t a plea for everyone to go to therapy – not in the least. But it is a plea for you to take care of yourself, emotionally and mentally. There is no reason for you to feel guilt about prioritizing your health – none. Take those first steps and thank yourself later.



  1. Yay Tara! Glad you’re going and I hope it helps!

  2. This is awesome. I was in therapy for about 4 years. It was very helpful in helping me work through grief and see some patterns in my life and choices. It took me a while to be open about it. It’s good that you are from the beginning.

    I love that you are making happiness a priority. :-)

  3. Hi Tara! It’s wonderful to learn that you’re taking the steps you need to be your best self. That’s awesome! And thank you for sharing your story so that others can be informed and inspired to make positive change in their lives. I applaud you. (And I miss being in therapy!) Take care!

  4. Hey there, you said therapy gave you permission to be yourself. How exactly has it affected your daily life? Does it mean that you are more conscious? Do you plan on doing it regularly? In case you are not, do you think it will have a lasting effect?

  5. Thank You so much for sharing this. I am thinking about going to see a therapist but just kept making excuses. I realize now, for my sake and my family’s sake, I need to go talk to someone. Thanks Again

  6. Thanks for sharing!