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Q: How do I know when it’s time to seek help?

Posted September 12, 2012 in Advice Column, Clive

A: We need rain. Desperately, unequivocally, we need the rain to come down. Crops are seriously suffering, and dire warnings of increased food prices are being issued by experts everywhere. But just like we couldn’t stop rain from flooding communities last year, we can’t force the rain to come. All we can do is conserve as much water as possible.

It’s really not a good comparison but trying to control the weather is like trying to control anything else in our lives except ourselves. (Sometimes managing our behavior is challenge enough). We can’t control our loved ones, or the car following too closely on I-235. Or in my case lately, one very young, 16-pound black pug, who is proving to be highly uncontrollable. I can choose to yell and stomp my foot at said pug, or I can seek out professional help. Believe me, the foot stomping is completely not working. Mr. Pug believes I’m inviting him to play a game of chew Mom’s shoe.

One thing I know for sure is that dealing with my pug’s issues is far less important than trying to work on a marriage or trying to help a child cope with emotions. Seeking help is nothing to be ashamed of, and unfortunately so many people feel just that way when they ask for help. They assume that they should be able to fix whatever issues they have without help. And maybe you can, but why not seek help from whatever avenue you can? Talk to a friend, a pastor or a therapist. If you’re experiencing issues in your relationships, you can do more than just hurt while waiting for change.

Information provided by Jenny Rainey-Gibson, LMFT, 6600 Westown Parkway #240, West Des Moines, 515-401-1016.

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