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Mental Health Spotlight: Help With Family and Holidays

Last updated on November 23, 2020

This material was written by a Dallas College licensed counselor. All views expressed in this piece are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Dallas College.

The holidays are here! That means cold weather, hot food and warm conversations. We gather (but maybe not this year), reconnect, catch-up, overeat and celebrate what we can.

For many of us, we’ll see family we haven’t seen in a while. Maybe you’ll spend the holiday with family you see regularly. Any family interaction can lead to a decent amount of stress.

Family can comfort, reassure and support or they can criticize, call us out and put us down. They know us well, so they know the best ways to lift us up and bring us down.

It adds a layer of stress onto what will be an even more stressful than typical Thanksgiving, for obvious reasons. So how do you deal with all this, keep the peace and maintain your mental health?

It helps to prepare and have a plan. Maybe work with a family member to build in breaks and pauses. That way, you can figure out what will and won’t work in your situation.

As usual, there are some handy resources of information out there! Check out what we’ve has put together.

Practical Resources

And please remember that before, during and after the holidays that you can always get quality advice and mental health care from your friendly, professionally-trained and licensed Dallas College counselors.

Written by Dr. Jesse Gonzalez, personal counselor at Dallas College

Dallas College Free Online Counseling for Students

Do you need to speak to someone about something you’re dealing with? At Dallas College, we never want you to feel alone. Our certified, professional counselors are here to help you — for free!

Our team offers virtual, one-on-one sessions for any student currently enrolled in Fall 2020 classes. To get started, all you need to do is contact your campus Counseling Center at the email address listed below:

Brookhaven Counseling Center:

Cedar Valley Counseling Center:

Eastfield Counseling Center:

El Centro Counseling Center:

Mountain View Counseling Center:

North Lake Counseling Center:

Richland Counseling Center:

Please note: If you are experiencing a mental health crisis, please call 911 or visit the nearest hospital emergency room rather than requesting an online counseling session.

Interactive Sessions by Topic

Our counselors also offer various psychoeducational workshops and Let’s Talk Series to assist students in developing academic skills, exploring career options, making career decisions and growing as a person. These interactive sessions are free and available just about every week! Join us for the following events:

Mood Management – Calming Anxiety: Tips

Tuesday, Dec. 1

1:30 p.m.

Sexting and Cyberbullying Workshop

Thursday, Dec. 3

11 a.m.

Our team of Dallas College counselors also proudly support TAO (Therapy Assistance Online) as a helpful, free resource that offers more than 150 brief, interactive sessions on various topics like mental health, wellness and substance abuse. Check out the following sessions that are available on-demand:

Healthy Relationships

Join in:

Enrollment Key: #Love

Let’s Talk About Anxiety

Join in:

Enrollment Key: #kick-it

Mindfulness 101 

Join in:

Enrollment Key: #keepcalm

Stress Management 

Join in:

Enrollment Key: #kickstress

Discover other events we have planned this semester by visiting our Counseling Workshops and Events page.

Community Mental Health Resources Available in Our Area

  • North Texas Behavioral Health Authority can help pay for community psychiatric, mental health and substance abuse services — please call 214-366-9407.
  • Suicide and Crisis Center of North Texas — please call 214-828-1000.
  • National Veterans Crisis Line — please call 800-273-8255 and press 1.
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline — please call 800-799-7233.
  • National Sexual Assault Hotline — please call 800-656-4673.
  • Message 741741 from anywhere in the United States to text with a trained crisis counselor. Heads up — standard messaging rates may apply.

It’s okay to say. Our college encourages and supports all students and employees in their efforts to openly talk about mental health. Even if you’re not dealing with a specific mental health issue, chances are someone you know is. If you see something that could help someone else, spread the word and share this information.

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