Memorial Day Weekend & Your Mental Health: What You Need to Know

WACO, TX –  While a three-day Holiday weekend, such as the upcoming Memorial Day Weekend, can be good for your mental health, there are some downsides – for veterans and the public.

Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who have died in the services of the United States of America. This is a day that can be hard for those who have served.

“Memorial Day can be hard for several reasons. First, some veterans struggle during this time because they feel guilt and loss over the people they served with during their time in the military,” said Elizabeth Timmons, Director of HOTBHN’s Heart of Texas Counseling Center. “This is a remembrance holiday, and remembering is the hardest part for them.”

The Memorial Day Weekend can be difficult for civilian populations.

“From a substance use point of view, this holiday can be hard because it is geared towards a celebration with friends and family that, more times than not, involves alcohol or other substances, says Lindsey Gaar, a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) with the Heart of Texas Counseling Center. “They may struggle with wanting to participate in the celebration but not wanting to relapse in their recovery.”

Both Gaar and Timmons stress that Memorial Day weekend can be hard on people who struggle with connecting with others.

“They feel alone on most days but even more lonely during holidays and special occasions. Some may struggle with social anxiety and friend/family gatherings,” Gaar and Timmons say. “Some may not have friends and family to celebrate with, and for them, this holiday reminds them that they are alone and can add to their isolation and depression.”

The Heart of Texas Behavioral Health Network (HOTBHN) is honored to offer outpatient counseling services for individuals who do not meet state requirements for services at HOTBHN — through its affiliate, the Heart of Texas Counseling Center (HOTCC). Contact HOTCC at (254) 297-7100. For complete information on  HOTCC and all of HOTBHN’s programs and services, visit our website at


Tanya Ledesma,

Public Information Coordinator

Cell: (254) 640-5229

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