Help Wanted

This article may contain affiliate links; if you click on a shopping link and make a purchase I may receive a commission. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
finn nJupV3AOP U unsplash
Photo by Finn on Unsplash

The first time I saw a therapist was the summer after high school. My friend Maureen died in a car accident, and just weeks after, my friend PJ, who was also an on-again, off-again beau for a couple of years, also died in a car accident. My mom found me a psychologist and I found it really helped not only work through their deaths, but the transition from high school to college, living at home to in the dorms, and my dad's health issues.

I again saw a therapist my senior year of college. I broke up with my boyfriend, dated a very toxic person, made some very bad decisions, and ended up dropping out and moving home. This therapist and I didn't have as good of a connection, but she still helped me get through a very difficult period of time.

2014 was by far one of the most difficult times in my life. I slipped on black ice Valentine's Day weekend and shattered my radius. It didn't heal properly and required a year of casts, splints, bone stimulators, plates, and surgeries. It was my right arm, so I couldn't write, could barely type, and felt useless at work and unable to do what had given me so much solace and joy over the years – journaling and blogging.

And then I became a thread on a blogging hate site. Doped up on pain pills, lying on my couch during short term disability unable to do much other than scroll through my phone with my left hand, I visited that thread every day, reading strangers' opinions on my fashion, my body, my marriage, my child, my personality. Feeling useless, worthless, and hopeless affected every aspect of my life and every relationship.

On short-term disability and unable to drive, I tried out Talkspace, a relatively new app at the time to meet virtually with a therapist. I found a female therapist in my state and we had what felt like a texting relationship. She would send me a message with questions and a prompt, I'd mull over them and reply. It worked until it didn't. Being an online person who loves to write, I found it hard to be raw through texts to my therapist. I caught myself focusing instead on flow and sentence structure, concluding sentences, and telling a story. But it was a start.

A reader suggested Brené Brown and I watched her TED Talk about the power of vulnerability. I bought one of her books on Audible and as I took early morning walks around my neighborhood, I listened to it, often crying to myself. I ended up listening to every single book she had available at the time, and it helped. But I think if I had a proper therapist at the time, I would have been able to better navigate everything.

The pandemic was tough for me; I was in a panic two weeks into Lockdown. I am the sole breadwinner for my family, and who the heck is going to be reading fashion blogs looking for work attire advice when in lockdown? I reached out to my old Corporate America colleagues, brushed up my resume, and looked to see if I could secure some contract work in my previous field.

However, I pivoted my content and used the time at home to work on my physical self. I changed my diet, got a Peloton bike, began regularly meditating, gardening, taking vitamins and supplements, and finding ways to improve my sleep and performance. The year had some seriously rough spots, but in general, I did well mentally, physically, and surprisingly ended up making more from Wardrobe Oxygen than I did the year prior.

2021 was a whole different ballgame, and from speaking to many of my fellow influencer and small business friends, they agree. The compassion for small businesses ended as we “went back to normal.” But nothing was normal, nothing could be planned, things were always in flux. I felt more panicked than I did the year before, my business more unstable, brands more unstable, and my audience as stressed and overwhelmed and angry as I.

2020 was a year when we as a family were finding our footing. We, like the rest of our community, were forced to work from home, our daughter was forced to do virtual learning. I commiserated with other entrepreneurs, parents, and influencers through social media platforms and scheduled FaceTimes and Zooms. It sucked, but we all dealt with the suck together.

But in 2021 we were no longer together. The year started with an attack on the U.S. Capitol that had my husband dribbling Equilibria CBD drops into my gaping open mouth as I flipped between CNN and MSNBC. As the year progressed, I saw how disconnected, angry, overwhelmed, and separate we all were. Whether it was politics, social justice, vaccines, masks, or just what we considered moving forward, it seemed like every situation became divisive.

The division was even felt in my household. My husband and I saw things slightly differently, as did we compared to close family and friends. Vacations, school, and social life were all affected and every little thing felt really tense, emotional, and overwhelming. In 2020 I was mostly thriving at home; in 2021 I was a houseplant in too small a pot placed too far from the sunny window.

And work… work suuuuuucked in 2021. Almost every single contact I had at a brand, contacts I had come to see as friends after years of working together, either switched companies to brands not a good fit for Wardrobe Oxygen or got promoted out of influencer relations. I had to start over with individuals who didn't know me from Adam and judged me by my number of Instagram followers instead of my whole business. Reels came on the Instagram scene, changing the whole game. Who cared about photos or words, it was now all about videos. I came to hate a job that I had loved for over 15 years.

At the end of 2020, I injured myself, unable to ride the Peloton bike or do most any kind of fitness for six weeks. I healed, and then had back issues which required another six-week break from the bike and a return that my chiropractor said could be a max of 50% of what I did prior. I didn't realize how much that activity was helping me mentally until I took these forced breaks and fell into a depression I hadn't felt since I was lying on my couch reading about my smug expression and waterlogged feet.

My dad dealt with depression. I knew firsthand how mental health didn't just affect the individual but those closest to them as well as their job and community. I knew I needed professional help not just for me but for those I loved most.

But unlike Beforetimes (AKA before lockdown), I was unable to find professional help. I called 30 different psychologists, social workers, counselors, and therapists and none of them were taking on new clients. I tried Talkspace again but after two separate counselors' intro videos, got ghosted. Tried Better Help, and the only counselors they had available were faith-focused. I even tried one of them, desperate for help and they started the session wanting to pray and ended by assigning readings from The Bible. It wasn't a good fit, I tried again and yet again was ghosted, waiting an hour for a therapist who never showed up.

By this time, I felt I needed therapy to get over my experience trying to access therapy. I really wanted to give up, but I didn't because I knew it wasn't just for me but for those around me.

I reached out to my insurance provider to see if I had missed any options for mental health counseling. They offered 100% covered telehealth therapy with select professionals and had one therapist with openings. He was a retired Marine in Georgia who was a Baptist minister, father of 8, and grandfather of 12. I didn't even make an appointment, knowing it just wasn't the right fit for me.

I tried to get by with self-care. Struggling with my old meditation practice, I tried Peloton guided meditations and when the weather allowed, took after-work walks outside. I took a few vacations thinking a change of scenery would help. I tried journaling but as someone who always has something to say struggled to find the words. My nightstand filled up with dog-eared self-help books I never finished. I even returned to Brené Brown but didn't find the relief I did years before. Everything felt more like another task on my never-ending to-do list.

And then at the end of the summer, a practice I reached out to in January let me know they had an opening for a therapist that offered virtual appointments. I began weekly sessions with this therapist and almost instantly felt better. However, this practice didn't accept insurance and sessions were costly (about $150 a session). Also, as time went on I didn't feel I was getting what I needed out of this therapist. When our refrigerator broke down I stopped therapy because I knew getting into debt for a kitchen appliance was also not good for my mental health.

But I thought, if this practice now had openings, maybe others would as well. I again went through the list of practices and individual practitioners I had researched a year prior and called each of them up to see if they had availability. One practice said they likely would within the next couple of months, and once I hit my deductible, sessions would be covered by insurance. Within a few weeks, they had an opening for a therapist and I have been seeing her since the end of last year.

When I was notified that my sessions were now out of pocket because of the turnover to a new year with my insurance, I felt confident enough with this therapist that it was worth the cost. My family and I made some lifestyle adjustments to accommodate the cost without having to dip into savings or whip out the credit card.

Why am I sharing all of this? Because I am in a position of privilege yet mental health counseling was practically impossible for me. And because if I am experiencing such feelings while being in a place where I can afford and have access to medical and mental health, think of the millions of Americans who do not have such access.

This experience has given me so much stress but also so much compassion and empathy. Whether or not mask mandates are lifted, offices are reopened, and vaccines are administered, this life is changed and we are changed. We have lost so much and so many.

We have cracked open fissures in our country that we cannot and should not try to seal. This time has affected our personal and global economy, how we work, how we shop, how we communicate, how we navigate the everyday. And we lack the resources to know how to deal with it all.

These past two years have made those who hardly spent time online into social media and internet phenoms. I gained over 2,000 Instagram followers, 5,000 newsletter subscribers, and increased my site traffic exponentially over the pandemic. Business-wise this has been great, but it has given me a peek into how folks are handling this “new normal” and like me, most aren't handling it well.

The bitterness, the short tempers, the need to share every grievance, to make snap judgments… I feel I have a pretty tough skin doing this for over 16 years but the past year has been extremely tough. I write, just KNOWING what kind of responses I am going to get, and often don't hit “publish” just because I just don't have the capability to deal with the emails and comments.

I can deal with trolls, I can ignore the snark, but when it's people like me, who are hurting and not knowing how to deal with it. Who don't have the resources to navigate it all and it comes out in their social interactions, even though I know it's not about me, it still really really hurts. It hurts because I can't help, no blog or influencer or podcast or self-help book can really help and it just makes this existence that much more bleak.

In 2019, I would end this post by offering some bullets on how I deal with my mental health, feeling like I truly had some answers. In 2020 I would tell you to contact your representatives, get involved, make some noise, and fight for mental health. In 2021… I was the one seeking such advice. And in 2022 I fully realize I don't have the answers and am really not sure how to create a concluding paragraph when there is no pretty bow to tie up this national mental health crisis.

Though contacting your representatives will do a bit more good than another glass of wine, an Amazon dress, or a new pair of shoes.

A woman with curly hair wearing a plaid blazer holds a green fur coat over her shoulder on a city street.

Did you like what you just read?

Consider tapping here to buy me a coffee in thanks. The best gift you can give a content creator is the gift of sharing. Consider sharing this article on Facebook or Pinterest. Thank you so much for your support!

Similar Posts


  1. Alison, your blog is a touchstone for me. I have learned so much from you and your journey that you have generously shared with us all. Your latest post was honest and so relatable–like you! Thank you. You put into words what I’ve been feeling. I’m mentally, emotionally, and physically tired in 2022 after 2020 and 2021–and for me 2019 when I lost my father and was laid off after 20 years with a company. Life continues to feel hard and unstable. I’ve thought about looking for a therapist but I’ve put it off because of all the things you’ve experienced. I just haven’t had the stamina to navigate another “fight.” But, the help you’re getting is making me rethink whether I should start looking for a therapist to work with. All the best to you.

  2. I’m grateful for every person who dares to be open and vulnerable and share their mental health struggles. I was a blogger years ago, and while it wasn’t my livelihood, I’m aware of the unique struggles of publishing personal content and navigating comments. I don’t even have words for the last few years of my life and the state of the world, the anxiety that bubbles beneath the surface and the days when it’s so hard to cope. Hang in there. I appreciate your work and believe in your resilience.

  3. Thank you for your candor with this. I am a woman of privilege who can afford to pay out-of-pocket for mental health services. Yet when I felt during COVID that I needed to get back to a therapist and a psychiatrist for medication management, I also called numerous providers and got nowhere. I guess it’s better to be told in a message that no, you’re not taking patients, and no, you’re not doing referrals than it is to be ghosted, but still very disheartening.

    I often think that if I have these issues, it is that much worse for people who cannot afford mental health services. This country is going to see its disregard for mental health services haunt it for years down the road because of what COVID hath wrought, especially on our young people.

    I guess it’s time to pick up the phone again and see about getting on a waitlist. Thanks for reminding me to to that and I hope your therapy relationship continues to work well.

  4. Thank you for sharing this so honestly written piece. I have been in therapy multiple times and know what a godsend a good therapist can be. Currently have a relatively new (to me) therapist who I don’t super-connect with and can only see through Zoom right now. It’s hard to discuss problems you’re having with your family members when they’re on the other side of the door in a very small house and not exactly therapeutic to sit in your car trying to see your therapist on a small cell phone to get some privacy. Still, your post is making me realize how lucky I am to have even this, especially w/ ACA insurance.

    I also appreciate your honesty about how 2021 and 22 in some ways are harder than 2020. It makes me feel less like I’m insane when I read how the govt. is considering declaring the pandemic “over.”

    There’s no good conclusion to my comments either, but sharing how we are feeling makes us all feel less alone. Thanks for always doing that, whether it’s about swimsuits or mental health, and providing a haven of heartfelt content on the Internet.

  5. Thank you for your unflinching honesty. It is relatable to say the least. I have turned to food and shopping to cope with the anxiety that seems to underlie every day of our 2022 existence and now with war also, I am grasping at ways to manage. I have been thinking of returning to therapy. I had a wonderful therapist for a couple of years when my mom passed. It may be time to get on the list to get back in with her. Thank you for the loving push

  6. Thank you so much for posting this. I agree with everyone else that I enjoy your posts so much and really like this community vibe, where we can talk about fashion and ideas in a (mostly) respectful forum.

    Totally agree with you about 2021 vs 2020 and now – OMG. We all need someone to talk to. I am a licensed clinical social worker, practicing in a hospital setting. Part of my job is to do an in-depth evaluation of the coping skills of patients who are facing a life-saving medical procedure. I tell my mental health colleagues all the time that I don’t know what normal coping skills should look like these days, and it breaks my heart that my patients – and my colleagues – can’t get the support they need. I’ve started doing free twice a year groups for a limited number of people to focus on ways to deal with stress and to give people a forum. Not exactly what they need, but it’s free and it’s what I can manage and helps me feel like I”m contributing.

    I would be lost without my own spiritual director, who I started seeing in 2020. We talk on the phone every three weeks and I mostly just cry. She is almost 80 and I hope to God she lives a long time. People on the provider end of things are also struggling as we witness so much suffering. Thank you again for this PSA. You really do make a difference.

  7. Thank you for sharing this. I worry it will be used against you sometime in the future. We are so backward when it comes to mental health, and no matter how many public figures try to talk up the value of therapy and openness, I know it’s held against us when we admit “weakness.”

    Any therapist who ghosts you should be reported to their licensing board. It’s unacceptable behavior. And so pathetically ironic.

    BTW, friends have been forwarding article after article about politics and war and COVID and the economy, each saying “don’t read the comments.” I can only imagine how painful it is to deal with negativity when you’ve shared personal info. Please keep doing what you’re doing — I and so many others consider you a true friend.

    1. PS. I meant to say, I was hugely impressed when you rented your office space. I figured this was a deliberate mental health move, which I applauded and still do!

  8. One of your new(ish) subscribers signing in to say thank you for this post. I appreciate the honesty. I am grateful I have a therapist I connect with who is covered by insurance but I know it’s a very rare find these days. Mental health is so important and I think we will continue to see violence, aggression, and just plain rudeness until people start to recognize they need to take care of themselves better. And decisionmakers should work on removing barriers to care.

  9. “By this time, I felt I needed therapy to get over my experience trying to access therapy. ”

    I feel this line so much. I have gained a lot from therapy at various times in my life, so I know it’s worth the hassle to get started. But especially when dealing with depression, it is challenging just to make one phone call, let alone play phone tag. I probably need to be seeing someone right now, but starting the whole process just feels so daunting.

  10. Thank you for such a thought-provoking post. What stood out to me most was the notion of therapists “ghosting” us. This happened to me, and I thought it happened because I was uninteresting and unimportant. Your post made me think that perhaps it wasn’t my fault.

  11. Thank you for always treating us with respect and honesty, as yours is one of the blogs I follow where I truly do feel like the community is valued and respected. It is a two way street, as you see by all these comments, for we do very much appreciate your writing, whether it be fashion, music, or real human truths like this. The other comments are so eloquent, not a whole lot more I can add, except one perspective. I saw my then 25 year old daughter finish grad school as a mental health counselor, starting her first job(not counting the internships in grad school) in January of 2017. Her caseload was immediately heavy, with management always trying to book more into her schedule. For these last five years she has seen 38-40 patients every week, and each has notes that must be done outside the appointment time, plus if minors are involved, there are calls to DSS at times, which can take hours. She is so frustrated over the “waiting list” at her company, but can only do so much. Her therapist ghosted her(!) in this last year of Covid, so she is now trying to find someone who takes her ACA insurance. So you and your readers are very on point that the system is broken, and I don’t have answers either. All I can do is try and be patient with those I come across in my daily life, because I have no idea what they are dealing with. I know when I have been in the black days, a stranger’s kindness has momentarily saved me many times. Thank you and peace and joy are my heartfelt wishes for you, dear Alison

  12. Thank you for sharing what has become a universal struggle for so many. Like you I’m privileged and was only able to find help through begging a relative who’s in the field to help. Even then it took months.

    God bless us all. Sigh.

  13. Thank you for sharing this, Alison.

    I would like to share a recommendation for Open Path therapy resources. My husband and I were in a bad place with our relationship last summer and agreed to seek counseling. We have insurance, but a huge deductible (thank you US healthcare system) and somehow I had heard about Open Path which connects you with in-person or virtual therapists on a sliding scale. Since it’s sliding scale, I was asked to share our yearly income and we paid a fee of around $50 to join. There were many therapists who were available right away and you can search by different crtiteria. The fee was reasonable and our sessions really helped. I’m sure it’s possible to make too much money for Open Path but for those eligible for the sliding scale services, it really helped us. I have no affiliation with them but I’m just grateful they exist.

    Thanks to you Alison and everyone who helps break the stigma of getting help.

  14. This is wonderfully written and so important to share. Thank you for doing that. I think I’ve shared here before but in case not, I always think about the time I woke up with a nosebleed I couldn’t stop. By that afternoon I’d seen my doctor and a specialist who cauterized the blood vessels in my nose. But if I’d been having a mental health crisis, it would have taken weeks to get into a therapist. It is a broken system for sure.

    I’m glad you found solid help. Rooting for you.

  15. Thank you for this important post. You bring such honesty and candor to everything you write. I’m grateful to have found your blog in the midst of this pandemic – it’s been a bright spot for me, as I know I’ll always learn something new that I can carry forward, whether it’s a styling tip, outfit idea, or mindset shift. Or, like today, I’ll find a point of connection and a reminder to find a moment to check in with myself today.

  16. I found your site early in the pandemic spring of 2020. It’s one of the bright spots of my day to read.

    This post blew me away. You’re a wonderful writer–thoughtful, funny, honest. Also generous–you bend ovrr backwards to help readers feel good about themselves and we all benefit from it.

    For every jerk that might say nasty things, there are multitudes of us who appreciate you and your wonderful work.

  17. Thank you for this very vulnerable and relatable post. There is a lot to reflect on.

    I regularly hear advertisements on podcasts that promote Better Help and Talkspace. This has led me to believe that their therapy services are readily available and easy to access. Your experience has opened my eyes to the reality of that situation.

    I’ve seen a few times people have attacked you and it has always made me sad. While we are free to disagree, there is a lack of decency and outright meanness in some of the things that have been said. It seems that there are much more positive comments than negative ones, but the ones that tend to occupy our minds are the critical ones. I’m not sure why that is. We all seem to have that tendency. Your words, “the need to share every grievance” resonate strongly. The option to scroll past something one doesn’t agree with is not taken often enough. Folks need to remember there is a person behind the post.

    I follow you because you are thoughtful and relatable. You put a lot of energy into providing worthwhile information to your readers. You include useful insights of ways that an item or brand comes short of your expectations. I can’t imagine the difficulty of having followers and needing to provide worthwhile and engaging new content consistently. I have a job where surveys are used and my continued employment depends on my metrics. I am expected to deliver content that is provided to me so I don’t have to think about creating it. You have an entirely different sphere. I don’t know how you’ve managed considering all that has happened behind the scenes. I have enormous respect for you.

  18. Thank you so much for sharing this. Your feelings and experiences really resonated with me. In the past few years of darkness and loss, the words and images you share through your work and the incredible community you have created have been a bright spot and a source of connection to humans out there feeling and experiencing what I am. Thank you.

  19. Thank you.

    While this won’t help you, I know that many schools in my area are working with different outside agencies to provide counseling within the schools. This counseling is grant-funded. The biggest problems they are facing is that the need exceeds the available resources, and that’s when many parents don’t know about the opportunity.

  20. This is quite possibly your most poignant writing yet, Alison. One addendum: it’s not a national mental health crisis. It’s international. I’m in the Netherlands, where health care is quite a bit more affordable than it is in the US, and I have two friends who are clinical psychologists – they, as well as everyone else in the profession, are overworked, overburdened and depleted. And yet, they go to work, trying to help as many people as rhey can. People like me.

    I, too, went into a depression, summer od 2020. I had been struggling with my health for a number of years, and as a result had not been able to work. In november of 2020, my husband and partner of 22 years decided he wanted a divorce because I was no longer “fun.” I spent 2021 telling the kids the sad news, working through all the paperwork, and wondering how on earth I was going to feed my kids. Then in november 2021, my only remaining parent was diagnosed with cancer. She died two days ago.

    To say life will never be the same again is an understatement. Thank goodness I already had a therapist when all this began, because I don’t know how I would get through this next phase of my life. But I also feel guilty taking up her time, because I know so many people are still on the waiting list…

    When we say we are grateful for doctors and nurses, we should say “and therapists” in the same breath. We surely would have lost more lives if it hadn’t been for them.

    1. Billie, I am so sorry for your loss. I lost my mother in October. I didn’t realize how big a hole it would leave in my life. Sending you internet hugs from a stranger.

  21. Thanks for posting!!! I relate to your wonderfully written comments, and I appreciate that you didn’t try to wrap it up in a sentence or two. We are in uncertain times, and I suspect there are no easy answers. I appreciate you and read your work regularly…

  22. I started following you many, many years ago for the fashion. And I still love your fashion, but I stay for the authenticity. You are a bright light in what can be a very fake, filtered social media world. You help me, and many others no doubt, by always keeping it real. Thank-you and may 2022 be filled with love, light, and prosperity for you & your family.

  23. What an insightful post! Thanks for sharing! The pandemic has really changed things. Generally I have been very active in politics and thought that everything would change with a new administration. Sadly, at almost 70, I am still naive! The way I am handling it now is giving myself news blackouts. I’m certainly not saying that this is a cure all , but it has been working for me!

    I agree that mental health is sorely underfunded and access to good mental health care is very limited.

  24. Thank you for sharing, we live in such unpredictable unprecedented times that it feels like everyone has lost their footing.
    I know I feel like we’ve all lost so much.
    Hoping and hanging in for better times ahead.
    Much love.

  25. This! All of it! I found your blog a few years ago and was intrigue: Someone with curves like me? Snappy wit and funny with an easy to read writing style? Fabulous taste? Here’s someone I need to learn from!

    I had to leave a job I loved, OR RN when I seriously hurt myself helping a patient, back in 2017. Took a solid year to find a job that wasn’t mind numbing. Was in a great groove in 2019 and the start of 2020. Then wham!

    Covid. Laid off. Four months of frantic job searching and interviews. More Covid. Politics. Too much news. Scared for my family. myself, my friends, my neighbors, my country, the world…

    Your words and beautiful photos have ranged from a delightful distraction to a confirmation that others are feeling the same way I have been-at loose ends, anxious, distracted, angry, scared.

    I want to say thank you. I should have said it long before this. Thank you.

  26. Beautiful writing and a summation of what so many of us feel. You are a cogent writer, I so appreciate this essay. You should be submitting to magazines if you aren’t already.

  27. You’re amazing. I find myself quoting your content often as well as your loyal readers. You are so much more than an influencer!! You provide valuable information, have established a diverse and interesting community, and facilitate thoughtful dialogue, Take care of yourself, we care.

  28. I almost stopped following you several years ago, because at the time I felt we had nothing in common. You were a young mother and I was (and still am) a retiree. But what you wrote on one particular day really resonated with me and I continued following you. I am so glad I did. You and I have different body types, taste in clothing, etc., but I appreciate your honesty, knowledge, sense of humor, and political stances. The past two years have been awful, and all we can do is all we can do. Take care off yourself. Do whatever you need to stay sane. Try and ignore the haters. There are more followers like me who (almost) never write than the sad, vicious creatures who live to spread venom.

    1. I too am retired with a different fashion style etc than you Alison but I find your writing so authentic and down to earth that I look for your posts each and every morning. After 10+ years I still enjoy your point of view and your ups and downs…..as a Canadian we have different issues with health care and many are without doctors let alone therapists. Hopefully now life will return to a new normal.

  29. Thanks so much for sharing- I hope the writing of the post was a small bit of therapy in and of itself. Hope you keep doing the things you need to do and feel better in 2022. I do love your voice & your content and I’ve found you to be such a great source for fashion and for life. Sending you all the good vibes from MN.

  30. I appreciate your candor, vulnerability, and generous heart. Thank you for this post, Alison. It’s the best thing I’ve read this week.

  31. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to your posts. You are ethical and honest which I really appreciate. Please continue to take care of yourself.

  32. I admire your vulnerability and honesty and appreciate learning how hard the past two years have been for you. What if we could all try to hold space for the particular ways these past two years have been challenging for others without comparing or dismissing or diminishing? What if we could all acknowledge our own struggles honestly without qualifying or adding a “but I’m so privileged” caveat?

  33. Thanks for sharing about this, I think it’s really helpful for people to be open about their mental health issues. I tried BetterHelp before the pandemic and just didn’t click with my therapist, in part because of the chat/text-based format. I think like you, it was hard for me to be fully present in a text conversation – it didn’t feel real or meaningful. I also found that text appointments didn’t feel “real” in a way that I needed to put the work into the therapy; it was way too easy to blow them off. I lucked out at the beginning of the pandemic and was able to get a therapist when everyone was pivoting to virtual appointments and it’s actually easier than if I had to get in the car and drive to my appointments. I’m struggling a little with my current therapist – I like her, but am not sure how much progress I’m making – but I think a lot of that is me, not her. Anyway, not to turn this into the story of my life! But it’s good to see other people talking about these things.

  34. “ Reels came on the Instagram scene, changing the whole game. Who cared about photos or words, it was now all about videos.”

    META may prefer videos, but this follower prefers photos & words. I found you & stayed because of your writing. Thank you for still writing.

    virtual hugs

  35. I just read this aloud to my husband because I both recognized myself in so much of this, and also really appreciate how candid and wise you are about the specific impact of the pandemic on your mental health and on your business model. Thank you, as always, for this honest perspective. This is why I’ve read you for over 10 years!!

  36. Talk about embracing vulnerability! Alison you are a brave and honest truth teller. I doubt you know how much positive impact your words and your openness will have. I adore you more than ever my friend.

  37. I also struggled with TalkSpace for similar reasons. I am a journalist, and doing my therapy via chat was not as helpful because I couldn’t be free with my words. You are the first person I’ve read express similar concerns — for the longest time, I thought it was just me.

    Thank you for sharing this post. I am grateful for your voice, and have turned to your blog and social media many times during the last two years to ground, educate and inspire myself.

  38. Great post! Thank you for sharing your story. I so appreciate your willingness to be real on this site. And as others have said, stay strong!

  39. Big hug. Thank you for sharing this part of your story. I’ve been riding the waves myself, and my overriding feeling at times has been gratitude that I quit drinking 2 years prepandemic… because that would have been an impossible temptation to disappear into, for me. I’m also the sole breadwinner (til recently. ) Ive also been dabbling with online help, trying to get outside every day, spending time with my dogs.
    You didn’t say, but being the emotional support for a teenager going through all of this has also been… a lot.
    Anyway… you never know how someone is really doing from what they share… so I’m always glad when people share the truth. It’s why I’ve been following you for like 12 years. ❤

  40. Thank you for this post. So many times we see only the positive, pretty side of people we follow on social media. In many cases it only leads to more feelings of inadequacy. It’s so important for us to see that others are struggling and trying to find a path toward healing and happiness. Stay strong, and again, thank you.

  41. I am sorry that you are receiving nasty, hostile messages. Have noticed this in a group I have been part of for several years: there are a lot of Dr. Jeykells turning into Mr. Hydes. Please know that there are many readers who value your work but don’t post. Peace.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *