Forum: Resilience is more about having courage to seek help to bounce back after falling down

I agree with Mr Lim Chong Leong's fundamental point on preparing our young people to face the "rough and tumble of life" with resilience (Counselling not the main solution for mental well-being, July 19).

However, I am concerned that Mr Lim's characterisation of counselling might come across as minimising the value and efficacy of the mental and emotional support it gives.

His characterisation might also deepen the stigmatising of those who seek out or are referred to counselling.

I believe counselling should be seen in the context of a diverse ecosystem of support, where counsellors, clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, guidance officers, coaches, social workers and members of our community come together in an integrated and person-centred manner to offer support appropriate to the needs of individuals at that point in their life journey.

Our current generation of youth, in addition to navigating the "usual" growing pains of adolescence and young adulthood, are also coming of age amid exceptional disruption.

Letting them acknowledge and articulate their feelings of "stress" under such extraordinary circumstances could help them expand their vocabulary and emotional literacy of self-awareness.

At a time when everyone, not just the young, needs even more support and resilience-building resources, I believe our community is better served by normalising and expanding access to the plurality of available mental health resources, rather than narrowing perceptions of these resources' value and appropriateness.

Surely, resilience is not about never falling down; it is more about having self-awareness and the courage to seek a helping hand to bounce back up on our feet.

Perhaps a more holistic view of what counselling is and what it can do would be more useful to our community.

Jessica Leong (Dr)

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.