letter to the editor

For those seeking mental health care, keep in mind that you are the patient and the time is about you. file

The number of people seeking mental health care increases every year as the stresses and strains of life become more complicated and challenging.

So here’s some advice for getting the best care possible:

Remember that you are the patient and this time is about you exclusively.

You are under no obligation to listen to a talkative counselor go on about their past problems, current missteps, hobbies, pet peeves, how many hours they work, or what they had for lunch.

You certainly don’t need to hear about how other patients they see may have more difficult paths to travel. Everyone has a certain threshold for physical pain as well as for mental anguish.

If you notice professionals interrupting you regularly, except when they need clarification or to give helpful wisdom, or they more often than not disagree with the ideas you put forth without hearing you out, then beware.

If they say things like you just need to be stronger, or control your temper, or stand up for yourself without careful consideration, this should be a warning.

Most importantly, make sure your counselor is studying you in depth, taking copious notes, asking insightful questions and generally trying to learn everything he can about you every time you walk through his door.

That hour you spend with a counselor can be cathartic, or you can leave exhausted and more lost than before.

KEVIN WEATHERS

Central Avenue

Summerville

Health rankings

We should treat your outside columnists with at least some skepticism.

In his Sept. 29 commentary, Robert Grayboyes tried to debunk World Health Organization global rankings in overall health care performance that put the United States 37th among developed nations. His basis is a couple of “minority reports” that contradict WHO rankings widely accepted for decades.

This reminds me of climate-change deniers who ignore overwhelming scientific consensus that climate change and sea-level rise are real and caused by man.

Unfortunately, while criticizing the most accepted metric we have, the writer suggests nothing better. Unfortunately, too, as the richest country in the world, the U.S. is nowhere near the best in a critical aspect of citizen well-being. Even if we were 20th, fifth or second, we could learn a lot from countries that rank higher.

And weeks ago in a column about gun safety, Rich Lowry claimed gun ownership as a “God given right.”

In fact, the right to bear arms was granted by the writers of the U.S. Constitution in an era of single-shot weapons in a young country with an uncertain future.

Moreover, as we all learned in high school civics, the Constitution can be amended: Think prohibition and women’s suffrage.

And let’s not think too deeply about whether those other countries with tighter gun laws are somehow going against God. We should welcome these outside columnists and fact-check them, too. They’re only opinion pieces.

As we’ve heard a lot lately, we’re all entitled to our own opinions, but not our own facts.

DOC ARDREY

Oyster Bay Drive

Summerville

Johns Island traffic

The traffic fiasco Monday that affected not only Johns Island but also West Ashley is totally unacceptable.

I was at River Road and Maybank Highway just after the power lines were knocked downed.

How one traffic mishap led to 9 hours of gridlock in Charleston
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Why weren’t they just moved aside until traffic was cleared? Police could have directed traffic until the problem was fixed.

There were many things that could have been done besides closing the roads.

An eight- or nine-hour closing is ridiculous.

Was this just a ploy by Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg, Charleston City Council members and other officials to show the need for I-526?

If we had a pitchfork road system, which is relatively inexpensive and quick to put in place, we wouldn’t have had this problem.

We need relief now, not 10-15 years down the road.

CAROLYN POWLESS

Thunder Trail

Johns Island

‘Law-abiding citizens’

SC gun maker stamps 'No Beto' on AR-15 part to mock Democratic presidential hopeful

In The Post and Courier’s Sept. 29 “Palmetto Politics” column, a Columbia-based firearms company spokesperson referred to gun owners as “law-abiding citizens.”

Weren’t most of the perpetrators of mass shootings “law-abiding citizens” before they opened fire?

SKIP CRANE

Seabrook Island Road

Seabrook Island