Adolescents are vulnerable to arrays of physical and mental problems, and some of them can have lasting consequences in their life. Embracing these concerns, Bhutan started counselling services in schools to curtail them as students inevitably confront them. Though schools hold a significant pool of adolescents and juveniles with various problems, many students do not seek counselling. Moreover, there is a scarcity of studies to comprehend the avoidance factors in seeking counselling by students in Bhutan. Thus, factors for not availing counselling by high school students were explored in this study. Total of 248 high school students was sampled using Yamane’s formula and proportionate random sampling. Self-administered interview schedules were employed to collect data in September 2018 in Tendruk Central School, Samtse, Bhutan. Students experienced problems, including physical health (37.90%), mental health (37.50%), and academic (37.10%). Although more than half (53.63%) of the students showed a high interest in seeking counselling, only 17.34% of the students had received counselling. The top three avoidance factors were inadequate counselling rooms (1), feeling better about seeking help from a spiritual person rather than a school counsellor (2), and the fears of losing confidentiality by speaking to the counsellor (3). Students did not seek counselling services due to confidentiality fear. Therefore, the current results show that schools with similar settings need to ensure the availability and accessibility of secure counselling rooms. Counsellors further need to advocate students about counselling ethics and processes to gain their trust.
Keywords: Adolescent, Avoidance Factors, Help-Seeking
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