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Seeking psychological help is not a sign of ‘weakness’

Durban based counselling psychologist and public speaker Tholinhlanhla Ngcoya. l SUPPLIED

Durban based counselling psychologist and public speaker Tholinhlanhla Ngcoya. l SUPPLIED

Published May 19, 2023


Durban — Going to seek psychological help does not mean you are weak.

This is according to eManzimtoti, south of Durban-based counselling psychologist and public speaker Tholinhlanhla Ngcoya.

Ngcoya said she encouraged men to seek help because the anger and pain they carried could lead to gender-based violence.

She further encouraged people to seek mental health healing in professional settings, because depression and other diagnoses could lead to death/ suicidal ideation.

“We want to change the narrative and promote a mentally healthy generation. Not forgetting our indigenous ways of healing that exist as well. I also urge our traditional healers to refer their patients to psychologists if they see that they need therapy while undergoing indigenous healing,” said Ngcoya.

Ngcoya was born and bred at Eshowe. She said she became a psychologist because she saw there needed to be more black psychologists who had cultural understanding of “our socialisation”.

“Impact of religion versus African traditions and how they impact our mental health. Giving people a safe, non-judgemental space where they can talk using their own languages and express themselves freely,” she explained.

Moreover, Ngcoya who said she was passionate about working with couples, marriages and families, especially from an African perspective, said she had vast experience providing clients with innovative treatment modalities to navigate psychological struggles.

“I have over the years highly developed cultural awareness and ability to work in an environment with people from diverse backgrounds, cultures and different spheres of life.

“I have a relatively diverse work experience, which makes me a versatile individual who can tackle any responsibility with grace and professionalism,” explained Ngcoya.

She said she was the founder of the Sibanisolwandle Foundation which hosts events like retreats and dialogues for men, youth and women. She said she also gave back to the community by sharing her expert knowledge through different radio stations, newspapers and social media platforms.

Moreover, the Daily News reported recently that the report by the World Health Organization (WHO) said there were about 970 million people in the world with mental health disorders.

The report revealed that in 2019, 14% of the affected group were young people between the ages of 10 and 19 years. It said about one in 100 people killed themselves because of pressures.

Director-general of the WHO, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the Covid-19 pandemic took a huge toll on people’s mental health.

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