Here’s a post that I’ve talked about before, but would like to reiterate especially in Mental Health Awareness Month — what being the Therapist Friend feels like.
As folks who have an interest in psychology and mental health, we often find ourselves in the position of being a listener to our friends.
This is an incredible and honorable position to be in — to be able to take some emotional load off of the people around us.
The issue is that friends are not supposed to be therapists.
Therapists are paid to listen to people and offer guidance. Friends are not.
Friends can, and should. of course, do some of that. But when your own needs are sacrificed and that becomes your identity, perhaps you aren’t a friend at all to them.
That is when you have to get crystal clear on your boundaries.
How Your Therapist Friend Feels Like:
This is How your therapist Friends Feel Like here are the 7 Things Your Therapist Friends feel Like:
1. Available 24/7
Being emotionally available around the clock for friends is a defining trait of the ‘therapist’ friend. However, the imbalance arises when this availability isn’t reciprocated, leaving the friend without a similar support system.
2. Emotionally Exhausted
Constantly being the receptacle for heavy emotional burdens can lead to burnout and emotional exhaustion. The ‘therapist’ friend may find it challenging to balance their well-being while being a pillar of support for others.
3. Emotional Sacrifice
In the pursuit of belonging and maintaining the ‘therapist’ friend identity, personal emotional needs are often sacrificed. Striking a balance between offering support and attending to one’s emotional well-being becomes a delicate act.
4. Identity Predicament
The ‘therapist’ friend may grapple with the fear of losing their identity if they stop actively listening to others. The risk of feeling disconnected or no longer fitting in with friends can be a source of anxiety.
5. Listener, Not a Sharer
Expressing an interest in mental health often leads others to share their struggles, but rarely do they inquire about the ‘therapist’ friend’s challenges. This one-sided dynamic can be isolating.
6. Questioning Alliances
Friends confiding in the ‘therapist’ friend about issues with mutual acquaintances can create internal conflicts. Navigating loyalty and alliances becomes a complex aspect of their relationships.
7. Unreasonable Expectations
Entitlement from others to have the ‘therapist’ friend listen to their problems and, at times, solve them can be overwhelming. Setting boundaries becomes crucial in managing these expectations.
For those playing the role of the ‘therapist’ friend, establishing clear boundaries is paramount. Communicate openly about your energy levels and, if necessary, guide friends to seek support from others. It’s essential to prioritize self-care to maintain a healthy balance between being supportive and preserving your mental well-being.
Frequently Asked Questions
Setting clear boundaries, communicating limitations, and encouraging friends to seek diverse support networks can help manage emotional exhaustion.
Emphasize personal boundaries, engage in activities that bring joy, and communicate openly about the need for a more balanced friendship dynamic.
Yes, friends confiding in the ‘therapist’ friend about issues with others can lead to internal conflicts and the questioning of loyalties.
Striking a balance involves setting clear boundaries, communicating openly about personal limits, and encouraging friends to seek support from diverse sources. Prioritizing self-care is crucial to avoid emotional exhaustion.
Yes, the ‘therapist’ friend often experiences emotional isolation. Friends may share their struggles without reciprocating interest in the ‘therapist’ friend’s challenges. It’s essential to communicate the need for mutual support.
Redefining identity involves emphasizing personal boundaries, engaging in activities that bring joy, and openly communicating the need for a more balanced friendship dynamic. Encourage friends to appreciate the multifaceted aspects of your personality.
So in This Post, Being The Therapist Friend Feel Like What other points can you think of/have experienced? Let me know in the comments.
If you found this helpful or feel free to share your experience if you can relate to these points and if you are comfortable share
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