Jennifer’s journey with mental health care began with a troubled marriage. She sought help at a mental health center in Arapahoe County, where she saw a marriage counselor for a year. The counselor suggested that Jennifer and her partner needed individual work.
Despite counseling, Jennifer’s marriage ultimately didn’t work out, and she found herself struggling with personal issues and feeling of inadequacy due to how she’d been treated in her marriage. After healing from her first marriage, she was able to find a new, healthy relationship, resulting in a blended family with her partner, which presented its own set of challenges. Jennifer wanted to be the best possible stepparent to her new husband’s children, who had gone through immense trauma with their mother dying by suicide. But it wasn’t easy, during this time, she was also furloughed from her teaching job due to COVID, and Jennifer often felt lost and unsure of how to navigate these new life transitions.
Then she found Jefferson Center, where Jennifer started with regular counseling. One of the counselors recognized her love for writing and suggested she attend a writing class offered by the Wellness Classes services at the center. Jennifer loved the department so much that she wanted to take all the classes she could. As she attended more classes, she was able to get out of her head and relieve the stress around parenting and stepparenting. She began setting goals for herself and found that the “Life Beyond Depression” wellness class was particularly helpful, feeling cared for and accepted with the other participants in the class. The Center’s staff taught Jennifer the importance of self-care and the various methods an individual can use to practice it. She learned to write in a G.L.A.D. journal, which stands for Gratitude, Learned, Accomplishment, and Delight. Writing in this journal has helped Jennifer improve her life, and others can see the shining difference in her. She feels that she is a better mother, wife, and teacher now, but Jennifer has also learned that it is okay to make mistakes and she does not need to be “on” all the time. She can embrace her “down” moments and days and take the time she needs for herself.
“If you’re not quite ready to seek counseling, joining wellness groups is a great way to ease into it and learn that you are not alone. The staff truly cares and the other participants really care as well.”– Jennifer
Jennifer’s life has improved so much through her experience with mental health care and the staff at Jefferson Center, and she wants others to know that they don’t have to suffer alone. Particularly, she appreciates the attention given to the uninsured and underinsured, who feel heard and valued at Jefferson Center. Each and every staff member provides a safe and supportive environment for anyone seeking help with their mental health. If you or someone you know is struggling, don’t hesitate to reach out. Jefferson Center is here to help.
Has your life improved because of mental health treatment? Do you wish to use your experience to help others?
Sharing your experiences with mental health treatment can help others who are struggling, and it can help fight the stigma of seeking mental health care.
You can remain anonymous.
For more information, please email VoicesOfHope@jcmh.org.