Feeling Like a Burden by Rachael Metzger, Clinical Intern 

Feeling as though you are getting in the way of something, imposing on someone, or souring situations can take a significant toll on your physical and mental health. Feeling like a burden is a conflicting state of being; you strive to prioritize your wellbeing while simultaneously thinking that doing so is putting others out. How in the world do you balance those emotions in a healthy way? 

Answer: you don’t. You are NOT a burden. 

Objects are burdens. Inconveniences are burdens. Annoyances, less than ideal situations, and hassles are burdens. If you are struggling with your mental health, it can be easy to believe that your vulnerability is an unbearable weight on the lives of the people around you. Let’s think about it this way. Have you ever been around someone who suffered from a physical illness or injury? If so, did you ever have to care for that individual? Did you have to sacrifice certain things in order to compromise for their illness or injury? Did you view the individual as a burden because of those sacrifices that you had to make? 

It is much easier to acknowledge someone’s pain when it is able to be seen. Making adjustments to compensate for one’s physical problem can be expected or even viewed as second nature due to both interpersonal and societal standards. Upholding that same standard for mental health appears to be more challenging, partly due to the fact that mental health issues can be covert, harder to see, and at times, invisible. Feeling burdensome is exacerbated when our problems are more difficult for others to visualize, but just as one’s physical obstacles deserve grace, mental health obstacles do as well. The ability to confront your vulnerability shows BRAVERY, STRENGTH, and POWER. You are not a burden for experiencing mental health issues. 


We can help you work through these feelings of burden at Owens Counseling. Call us at (847) 854-4333 for a free 15-minute consultation.