Skip to main content ConnectSubgroupsMental Health and Well-Being

Mental Health and Well-Being

This group serves as a community of practice for Extension personnel and their community partners who share a commitment to improving mental health through a focus on social and emotional well-being. Members are encouraged to create blog posts, publicize upcoming events, share resources, and engage with other members on issues of common interest.

A raw and honest account of my therapy journey

Guest pot by Jane Schuchardt, Executive Director (ret.), Extension Committee on Organization and Policy
What do you do when your handsome, talented, and accomplished son in his early 20s, one you thought you had a close relationship with, suddenly pulls away, acts in ways that seem out of the ordinary, causes you immense concern? Seek help β€” someone who will listen without judgment, skillfully take you down a path of discovering insights and ways of coping, and walk beside you to celebrate accomplishments and grieve losses.
For more than a decade, I dutifully engaged in psychodynamic therapy, the firm foundation that kept me standing as our son struggled with bipolar disorder. Writing about this journey seemed important for me to savor what I had learned and, on occasion, look back on it as a reminder of my worth. I had no intention of sharing it, though later, as the stigma associated with mental illness seemed to moderate a bit, getting this first-person account published, in hopes it encouraged others to reach out for help, seemed appropriate.
The article in part first appeared in the Nebraska Quarterly, published by the Nebraska Alumni Association, Lincoln, NE in the Spring 2022 issue with reference to the complete article here The editor-in-chief of this publication has granted permission to include the article in this blog post.
Please know that each person’s experience with psychotherapy is different. My story is grueling in duration and complexity with a positive result that allows me to live my life, though far from perfect, with confidence and peace. I am thankful.

Add Comment

Comments (0)


About the Extension Foundation

This website is supported in part by New Technologies for Ag Extension (funding opportunity no. USDA-NIFA-OP-010186), grant no. 2023-41595-41325 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the Extension Foundation. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of use at

Link copied to your clipboard.