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Is it really worth it to put yourself last?

Hard times come for all of us eventually. A family member gets sick, our partner loses their job, we can’t travel to visit loved ones because of pandemic border closures, a child is diagnosed with a learning problem or disability.


When you get stressed and burnt out it impacts the kids. They begin acting out or returning to behaviours they had grown out of. Their school performance might suffer and they might start doing things that frighten you like cutting, trying alcohol or talking about dying.


When your family is in crisis and the children seem to be really struggling, it can be sensible to get the children some therapy first. “I will just make sure they’re ok,you say, “and then it will be my turn to maybe get some professional help to work through my stress/anxiety/grief/depression.”


That seems to make sense, doesn’t it?


The problem is that you can’t lead your family if you’re not functioning well. Children look to adults to learn how to respond and react.


If you are experiencing so much anxiety that you’re

  • avoiding going to places,

  • speaking negatively about events or people nearly all the time,

  • arguing more than usual,

  • responding to small issues as though they’re absolute catastrophes

Then those are the messages and coping strategies that your children are absorbing.


If you are feeling so down in mood that

  • nothing seems worth it,

  • you have stopped doing things around the house,

  • your fuse is super short and everything pisses you off,

  • you simply can’t smile anymore

Then if those problems aren’t addressed, any input by a child psychotherapist may be ineffective once your child gets home after their session.



Putting yourself first will pay more dividends in a shorter amount of time. Like the pre-flight instructions on aeroplanes – putting your own oxygen mask on before you assist dependants is crucial. If you’re putting others’ masks on before you’re wearing your own and the oxygen stops: you’re all toast.


If you are stuck in the belief that you don’t deserve to care for yourself or you just don’t have time to care for yourself – we need to talk. Let’s unpack together those subtle messages you have absorbed throughout your life or the beliefs you’re clinging to – that are stopping you from caring for yourself first.


When you are clear on those messages and beliefs then you can look at them objectively and decide if you want them to rule you – or guide you. That way, you will be better equipped to be there for your family in hard times and blessed times.


If you would like some assistance on how to put yourself first, contact me: * Call me on 0492 918 646 * Email me at kyliebellcounselling@gmail.com * Visit the website * book an appointment


Yours, Kylie 😊


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