YOU HAVE TO HOPE
David Chang tackles questions on mental health and how to look after yourself in hospitality.
Ihave seen a psychiatrist, the same one, since 2003. Even when I lived abroad or lived elsewhere for months at a time opening a restaurant or whatever, we’d have phone sessions. It’s been the longest and most regular relationship I have ever been in. When I met him, he was in his late
30s and had just finished his residency at med school, and now he looks like an old man, and so do I.
I had a hard time finding a psychiatrist. I remember thinking that there are a lot of therapists, but I didn’t want a therapist – I wanted to see someone that was going to deal with my brain and my psyche. I wanted someone that not only wanted to be a therapist but was interested in psychotherapy – I wanted the full package.
Unfortunately, the full package is hard and expensive. I think most people would consider me a cheap bastard because I don’t spend money on anything except for food, but I’ve always spent as much money as I had, or could afford, on mental health. And it wasn’t until I was 26 that I found the right guy. I had a few false starts with a few other medical professionals but I persevered and I suggest you do that too.