The following was written by and from the perspective of Remezcla author Joe Rodriguez.
Every time I mentioned my anxiety or fears at home, most of my family dismissed my feelings. The judgment and criticism I’ve received isn’t uncommon within the Latinx community. Even when I openly talk about seeing a therapist, I’m met with misguided comments. While stigma surrounding therapy still exists, it’s more openly discussed than in the past. And even TV shows – in particular My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – have portrayed mental health in nuanced ways. But therapy is still misunderstood, and within the Latino community it’s (not unfairly) seen as a something that is intangible, a luxury not afforded to those struggling financially. This means many feel shut out of therapy, which is especially concerning for our community. As nonprofit Mental Health America reports, “36 percent of Hispanics with depression received care, versus 60 percent of whites.”
Taking ownership of my mental health has made a huge difference, but it’s also been an incredibly rocky process. I made the decision to find a therapist two years ago when I felt very lost. But I had no guidance, no way to figure out how to find a therapist, no idea how to wrap my head around the logistics with my insurance, and no answers about what steps I should take next.
If you’re just embarking on your mental health journey, it’s a scary and stressful time. But in hopes to make you feel less alone, I interviewed a Latina mental health activist, a woman who knows how intimidating the process can be, and a queer Latino therapist who have tips on how to get started. Read on to check out a six-step guide that will help you start your own journey including:
- How to find a therapist
- Figure out what’s right for you
- How to deal with families and loved ones
- What to expect
- Know that it’s a process
- What you should keep in mind
Read more on Remezcla.com.