One of the most important opportunities that the UCC has – and sometimes most challenging – is working to reduce the stigma associated with seeking support from a mental health professional. It’s hard for many of us to validate our emotional challenges as being real and important enough to seek support for. They aren’t like a broken leg that can be seen on an x-ray, or like high blood pressure that can be measured. That can make our emotional concerns easier to dismiss, or even blame ourselves for (i.e., “just suck it up!). If only we could break out into purple spots to let ourselves and those around us know it’s a really bad few days.
We see a great opportunity at Wake to help our community know that it’s ok to ask for help (and I practice what I preach – I’ve sought out my own counseling and therapy when needed for much of my adult life). As a result, one way we are addressing this is by creating “Deacon Drop-Ins.” This is when one of our clinical staff members sets up at a more semi-public location around campus and invites casual conversation, consultation, and questions about what counseling and the UCC are. Our aim is to normalize having some of these conversations, and for the community to get to know all of our staff so that if there is a more pressing need to talk, reaching out to us is a little bit easier.
This fall, drop-ins will be located in ZSR Library and at the Law School. Keep an eye out for our signs and stop by for a chat and some swag! I promise we’re harmless 🙂
Categories: UCC News