A couple of weeks ago, a young woman was thrown to her death out of a moving bus on the Thika Super Highway. Her crime is that she’d argued with the bus conductor about the bus fare.
As Kenyans always do in the face of a crisis
, we quickly began looking for the person to point our fingers at. Blame, in this case, was assigned to the notorious matatu culture
, we were able to wash off blame and move on from this incident.
We may be sleeping better at night but we are ignoring the anger that drove a man to push a woman off a moving bus. That rage that will no doubt explode again and maybe take another life. Kenyans have a lot of reasons to be angry, from the flailing government to the fact that tomatoes are quickly becoming a luxury the lower class income earners can’t afford. This, right here, is why we all need therapy.
In the movies, therapy entails sessions where you sit on a fancy couch and ramble about your problems as a therapist stares blankly at you and scribbles on their clipboard every so often. Well, therapy is this but it also is about processing your emotions.
We are coming from a generation that was encouraged to not show emotion and we brag about kukaa ngumu.
The truth we might not like very much is that every bad experience and every trauma needs to be processed. Pushing it to the back of the mind and acting tough
is merely slapping a band-aid on it.
No Judgment Space
Seeing as there are all these idle people hanging about, social media
can be a great space to vent. Unfortunately, on those online streets,
there will always be someone with a contrary opinion, someone who will think your opinion is the most stupid thing they have ever heard - even if you are Mother Theresa. Your therapist’s office is a judgment-free space. A place you can share your thoughts without being stressed that someone will beat you down about it.
You Don’t Need Another Friend
They say show me your friends
and I will show you who you are. This means that the people you hang around tend to have the same opinions and thought processes as you. Even when they do not, friends will keep from expressing differing opinions to prevent friction. Your therapist is not your friend, they are not trying to get you to like them. They are trying to help you work through your problems and if a different perspective to bring you back to reality is what you need, they will not hesitate to dish it.
The best part about therapy has to be the fact that you don’t have to go through the exhausting rituals you do when you are trying to make a friend.
There is no small talk, no pretense, or beating about the bush. With your therapist, you just head straight to the point.
Give It A Shot
We are not as rational or as level-minded as we like to believe. Sometimes passion gets the better of us and only a third party can see it. Whether it's depression, anxiety
, heartbreak, or grief, seeing a therapist will make the experience much smoother. That assumption that someone is going for therapy because something is wrong with them belongs out the window.
I know, I know, therapy in Kenya is not cheap. But how much is the cost of not giving therapy a shot? You may spend Ksh 2,000 per session and this piled over months can seem like a lot but what is the cost of losing your marriage? Of not becoming an effective parent? Of not confronting your anxiety or fixing your sleeping problems?Read: Why We Need To Stop Apologising So Much