When things get tough, and you do not feel like letting your family know about your ordeals just yet, chances are, the first person that you may think of confiding in is a therapist. For one, this individual is a total stranger, so you do not have to worry about him or her having an idea about your past or current situation. He or she has spent years learning and training to become a mental health professional as well. Hence, a therapist is more likely to share tips and tricks on how to overcome different psychological issues than anyone from your circle.
Nonetheless, if you ask someone who loves dogs so much, they may not be able to relate to people who need to hire a counselor to feel better, emotionally, and mentally speaking. It is not because they are insensitive or they have never had to deal with such problems ever. Everyone tends to go through depressive periods in which all you want to do is mope around the house and stay away even from the people who have always stayed by your side. Their only edge over others is that they have a pet at home that can support them during such trying times.
This makes us think, therefore, that it may be better to invest in an emotional support animal (ESA) than a real therapist. Here are the perks of doing so.
1. You Can Save More Money
Let’s get this straight from the get-go: you cannot be granted an emotional support animal without the recommendation of your counselor. The latter has to assess your mental health condition first and observe how you respond to different coping mechanisms before they can decide that you need the help of an animal more than a human. Thus, you may have to pay for consultations and several therapy sessions in the beginning.
In the long run, however, the cost of getting an ESA and looking after the animal can be lower than the fees that most therapists ask for. That is especially true if the dog that you already own gets certified for this job. Their expenses are ideally a part of your budget already, unlike the therapy fees. So, you will be able to budget your money and avoid spending too much before getting over your issues.
2. The Animal Can Accompany You Anywhere
Having a therapist can be useful when you want to have a conversation with someone who has background information about the things that you are dealing with in general. This person can talk you through the symptoms that you may see in yourself as well. However, it is beyond a mental health professional’s list of duties to come to your place whenever your condition flares up in the middle of the night or answer your call even if they are attending to another patient. That is why it seems better to have an emotional support dog during the dark phase of your life.
When you have an ESA, after all, it can accompany you anywhere you want to go – even in locations that do not normally accept animals. Apartment managers or owners, for instance, cannot turn you away if you show them your therapist’s letter. Airlines usually allow the emotional support dogs to sit next to their handlers, especially when the latter is either scared of flying or prone to having a full-on panic attack all the time. Restaurants, coffee shops, and other public establishments have no choice but to let the ESA in as well. So, you can always turn to the animal whenever you need emotional support.
3. You Can Stay Away From Electronic Devices
Gadgets are seriously not the best companions for people with troubled minds. The internet connectivity gives you access to online news and social media channels, for one. These are the surefire sources of gossip, bad news, and other depressing information. Aside from that, being with your electronic device for hours every day makes you lose the time that you should be spending to face your issues and build relationships.
The thing is, depending on a therapist alone does not allow you to let go of your gadgets. You may turn it off while you are in session, but that will not take more than a couple of hours. After therapy, you may switch it back on and continue using the device as usual. Furthermore, when something bothers you, you may not be able to keep yourself from messaging or emailing the therapist – two tasks that require you to use an electronic gadget.
Meeting a therapist is inevitable if you want to become eligible for an emotional support animal. Despite that, if you have a choice to get one and ditch therapy, you should grab the opportunity in a heartbeat. Not only is it more budget-friendly, but you will also have a constant companion and be able to stay away from gadgets that bring bad vibes. What more can you ask for?