The stigma of getting “help”

I am one of those people who doesn’t like to ask for help. Now, I’m not talking about getting help to screw in a lightbulb or start a fire…This is what comes up if you search my name in Urban Dictionary: “How many bethanys does it take to screw in a light bulb? Zero. bethanys make boys do it for them. What can I say? This is accurate. And anyone who lived with me in Georgia knows that I am perfectly fine letting others do things for me that I don’t care to learn how to do…like starting a fire when it’s snowing outside. Let the men do it!

But, to ask for help with something that I want to appear to be good at or in control of, like my fears or my worth issues or my raging insecurities…that’s a little more tricky. Asking for help with those things is way too vulnerable. To ask for help, is admitting that I am weak and that I can’t do it on my own – just me and God. But to not ask for help, is to willingly blind myself and deceive myself of my humanity and my need.

God did not intend for life to just be you and him. If he had intended that, he would not have said that it is not good for man to be alone…meaning just Adam and God was not ideal, it was not how he created us.

On top of all of this, there is this stigma within some Christian traditions that says ‘only crazy people go to counseling or get help.’ That lie is full of pride, denial, and self-elevation. To refuse professional help – whether to unpack a childhood trauma, to process grief, or learn how to communicate with your spouse – is foolishness. My first experience with counseling was in 2014 and it was one of the best experiences of my life. I could only go for a few months, but I walked away empowered and aware.

God has given his people gifts to comfort, heal, and mend the wounds of his body. Do not be arrogant to think that your wounds do not need attention or care. Those who refuse to go to the doctor for physical injuries suffer more than those who admit their pain and seek help. Instead, humbly accept the salve for the open wounds of your heart. Receive the cast for your broken bones that have been crushed by unexpected circumstances.

The biggest lie that fuels this stigma is that time heals all wounds. It doesn’t. Only our maker and our great physician can heal our wounds. Yet he has designed his body to self-heal; he has equipped his people with tools to suture and bandage.

Get honest about your pain, your struggle, your grief. And seek help from spirit-filled professional counselors. It is absolutely weak and it is vulnerable. But to deny that we are weak and fragile, is deception and arrogance. May the body of Christ seek wholeness and healing in every area of our lives – no matter what it takes.