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MVRC to offer counseling for veterans, spouses starting July


Starting July 1, Military Veterans Resource Center (MVRC) will be offering free mental health counseling at all four of our resource centers in Columbus, Chillicothe, Dayton and Hamilton, OH. Veterans, service members and spouses can receive assistance by contacting MVRC’s Licensed Professional Counselor Ryan Sargent at 614-230-0401.

Having a counselor on the team has been a long-time goal for MVRC, and we’re grateful to have Sargent, also an Army veteran, join us in our mission. Here’s what he had to say about the counseling services he’ll be providing veterans and spouses.

How long have you been a Licensed Professional Counselor?
I’ve had my license for one year. I graduated from the University of Dayton in May 2015, and I fulfilled all the licensure requirements in June 2015. I completed my Practicum and Internship at Zeller & Associates, LLC EAP and stayed on there after graduation, opening my own small private practice. I’ve been practicing there for over two years and have seen numerous clients.

What type of counseling services will you offer veterans at MVRC?
My counseling practice is limited to serving individual adults. My areas of competence are personal and social counseling, diagnosis and treatment of mental and emotional disorders, career and educational counseling.

What would a counseling session with you look like?
The first session consists of information gathering and getting the main idea of what’s going on in your life. Consecutive sessions build on this, and work towards creating a mutually respectful relationship. Counseling sessions typically last 50-90 minutes and are planned beforehand.

What are the signs that someone may be in need of counseling?
Early signs can include problems that keep surfacing that cause discomfort or conflict. Mild to significant emotional or mental pain that seems to persist in spite of best efforts to solve issues on your own, or with the help of your support system.

For example: if you experience a loss (death of loved one, loss of job, end of a relationship), and you continue to feel sad, have lost your ability to enjoy life, find yourself not able to eat or are overeating, and people who normally support you are saying “get over it” or “I already told you what you need to do”.

What turning point do people have that makes them decide to attend counseling?
Too often, people wait too long to ask for help and counseling is literally their last option. While there is always hope, solving a crisis often delays the progress people really want to see in their lives – defining, forward movement towards, and eventual fulfillment, of their life goals.

What kind of difference can counseling make for someone going through a tough time?
It can be invaluable to have an objective point of view on an issue. Most of the time, genuine listening can alleviate a lot of suffering. A safe, non-judging, confidential environment can be a reprieve from day-to-day stress and provide some clarity.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed, anxious or depressed, it may be time to assess your emotional health and talk with someone about the obstacles you’re facing. For questions about beginning the counseling process, call Ryan Sargent at 614-230-0401, or send him an email at ryan.sargent@milvetsrc.org.

Photo: Ryan Sargent in our Columbus Resource Center.