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Is Therapy The Best Christmas Gift For Your Partner This Year?

by Hugo

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Therapy is the most effective treatment for mental health struggles, by a long shot. And since 88% of people are struggling with a mental health issue of some sort, it’s easy to see why I came up with this article title.

According to our study of mental health struggles, only 26% of people dealing with mental struggles feel comfortable talking about it with their partner. In other words, 3 out of 4 people struggling with an issue of mental health are not comfortable discussing it with their partner.

Even though your partner may not be showing signs of mental health issues, there’s still a strong chance that they will benefit from a therapy session.

Would you consider gifting your partner a therapy session for Christmas this year?

About this data: We surveyed 5,521 people and found that almost 90% of people struggle with mental health issues. These results led us to start publishing interviews with people struggling with issues of mental health. This year, we published over 100 interviews and are sharing all the data behind these interviews here on Tracking Happiness.

Therapy is most helpful for anxiety and depression

At the point of writing, I’ve interviewed 108 people, of which 57 were helped by therapy (53%).

No other treatment comes close in its effectiveness as therapy does. Therapy is what helps most people overcome their mental struggles. In addition to therapy, here are other ways people are finding help in overcoming their struggles:

Therapy is the most effective treatment for mental health struggles, based on 108 interviews.

What I’ve learned from these 108 interviews is interesting: Therapy is especially effective for people struggling with specific mental struggles.

For example, therapy is especially effective at helping people overcome depression.

interview data essay people struggling with depression

Out of the 108 people I’ve interviewed so far, exactly half of them struggled with depression. 33 of these people shared how they were helped by therapy.

Mark was the 9th person I interviewed, and belongs to this group:

mark joseph interview snapshot

“I was embarrassed by my feelings and didn’t want anyone to know how much pain I was in, so I often put on a brave face. Even on my worst days, I tried to make it look like everything was okay when I felt anything but deep down.”

When I asked him for his best piece of advice, he answered:

“I advise someone struggling to reach out for help and support. It can feel overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that you are not alone. There are people around you who care about your well-being and want to help. Whether it’s a close friend, family member, or professional therapist, it is important to talk to someone and share your struggles.”

Out of the 108 people I’ve interviewed, therapy turned out to be of even more help to those who struggled with anxiety.

interview data essay people struggling with anxiety

Sharanya was the 103rd person I interviewed. Therapy helped her overcome anxiety even though her first 3 shots at therapy weren’t successful:

Sharanya Ramakrishnan interview snapshot

“I had tried therapy once, way back in early 2019, but didn’t find it helpful. I tried it again in 2020 and early 2021 but did not find it very helpful. I felt like I was summarizing what was happening in my life to someone, that’s it.”

She eventually found a therapist that helped her overcome her anxiety:

“I’ve been in therapy for almost 2 years now, with weekly therapy sessions and daily medication. I can now confidently say that I have the ability to tackle whatever life throws at me and hope that I don’t experience a drawn-out phase of struggle like before.”

What about online therapy?

Interestingly enough, none of the people I’ve interviewed have been helped by online therapy.

Lots of online therapy platforms do their best to convince others that online therapy is just as helpful as in-person therapy. With lower costs, no commute and flexible scheduling, there are plenty of benefits to this type of therapy.

Interestingly, none of the people I’ve interviewed have been helped by online therapy. All the 57 interviewed people who were helped by therapy were helped by actual in-person therapy.

The gift of therapy

If you’re looking for the perfect Christmas gift this year, maybe this will convince you that therapy might be the best gift.

Now, I understand that giving someone a certificate for 1 free hour of therapy might come across as an insult.

How would your partner react if you gave them the certificate and said: “Here, babe, Merry Christmas”? I bet you would at least get some raised eyebrows.

dalle person receiving unwanted gift

But why is that, really?

It’s because there still is a big stigma on therapy as if it’s something to be ashamed of. This is obviously directly correlated to the existing mental health stigma. As for that, my goal with these interviews is to help destigmatize both these issues by sharing as many stories as possible.

Like this article? Let me know in the comments below!

Want more like this? Keep an eye on the blog as I’m publishing more articles like these!

Want to help destigmatize mental health issues with your story? I would love to publish your interview and have a positive impact on the world together. Learn more here.

Hugo Huijer AuthorLinkedIn Logo

Founder of Tracking Happiness, with over 100 interviews and a focus on practical advice, our content extends beyond happiness tracking. Hailing from the Netherlands, I’m a skateboarding enthusiast, marathon runner, and a dedicated data junkie, tracking my happiness for over a decade.

2 thoughts on “Is Therapy The Best Christmas Gift For Your Partner This Year?”

  1. Therapy is, IMHO, not suitable as a surprise gift at Xmas or at any other time. A marriage or similar arrangement is a partnership of two people who should be mature and intelligent enough to raise therapy issues, and other issues, privately with their other half and agree a course of action even if it is “do nothing”. The gift notion smacks of “getting one over” on the partner who might react badly. That is never a good idea if you value the survival of the partnership. Why do people have difficulty in raising sensitive topics with their partner? Maybe because they are not in a secure and loving partnership.

    • Thanks for your thoughts, Ron! Appreciate you taking the time to comment. 🙂

      I agree with you, if it is not communicated clearly, giving someone therapy can feel like a non-so-subtle hint. However, if therapy has been discussed as a viable option, and the gift is given in private, would that change your opinion?


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