Finding Help in Times of Isolation

Tah Si Soe Thaw, Reporter

Mental health problems have always been an issue even before the pandemic, but many people are experiencing a decline in their mental health during these hard times. The lengthy period of being away and isolated from people along with being away the outside world put not only teenagers, but adults under stress.

Mental illness can drain someone out and not having a source of help during this pandemic makes it harder. However, some are learning that they’re not alone as they take their first step to getting help.

Students can always go to their counselor to get some assistance with their problems because they’re feeling isolated, struggling, or just need help figuring out decisions. Some of the increased issues counselors are seeing in their office include economic struggles, the feeling of isolation, and indecisiveness.

“Everyone is having trouble making decisions because situations change every day, trying to anticipate tomorrow is impossible right now,” counselor Andrea Brown said. “We hope that students know counselors are here to help them.”

The way that Benson counselors are offering help to students at the moment is mostly through emails. Every Monday, students will receive an email with a link to fill out a counselor request form in case they want to talk to the counselor. Based on the request, their counselor may reach out to them through phone calls, emails, on Teams, or be it face-to-face.

In case that isn’t able to help them, there’s always the option of just calling a hotline if it’s more comfortable that way. Resources like family, friends, and teachers are always there as well even though it might be more uncomfortable for the student.

The important thing that should be known as the pandemic is taking a toll on the population, is the fact that nobody is alone. Even if one may feel alone at the moment, there’s always ways for them to get some help in case they need it and counselors are always happy to help as well as the other people in someone’s life are ready to help as well.

If it’s costly for student to find their own therapist, counselors can always set them up with a certified therapist as it is sometimes more affordable. “If a school counselor would set up therapy for a student, then a parent could place the cost on the counselor,” counselor Robert Koneck-Wilcox said. “For this reason, schools have stayed away from making medical choices for families.”