Why wait?  Through the years that I have been involved in counselling, and in particular crisis counselling, I have often found myself thinking, “This person should have started to look for help about seven years ago.”  Now, seven is a pretty arbitrary number.  It might be more accurate to say two years, in some cases, or ten years in others.  The central point remains: people wait too long before addressing the things that are not going right in life and in relationships.


Certainly, it takes time to develop the patterns that bring us pain in life and friction in our relationships.  The other side of this is at it takes time to change those patterns to something that works better.  It takes time, but the sooner we address what is not working, the easier the change will be.  Also, the sooner the change is begun, the smaller the change that will be needed.  Waiting makes it worse.  Waiting makes it slower to fix.


In relationships, especially, the sooner the difficulty is addressed, the more energy there is available to address it.  Some couples seek counselling only as the “last resort” before the split up.  When this happens, not only are the patterns ingrained, but also, everyone is already upset and ready to bail out.  Bridges are burned, the commitment level is lower, and most of the emotional resources are used up.  They are finally motivated enough to go to counselling, but often the commitment just isn’t there anymore.


Why wait?  Seeking help, seeking counselling is not the extra-ordinary measure some people seem to thing it is.  People will take their car in for a routine check.  People will see a doctor for regular physicals, even when they are not sick.  Why not take the time for emotional health, too?  People go to the dentist when the tooth pain starts, they do not wait for the swelling and infection to be so bad they have to have the teeth pulled.  Maybe people need to think of counselling like getting a filling put in, rather then like having the tooth pulled.  Why do people wait for their social, emotional, or relational life to be so bad only drastic options remain?  Don’t live with the pain, do something about it.