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The Rural Adversity Mental Health Program does not provide Emergency Services.

Are you tough enough to encourage someone to help?

Author: Letitia Cross, RAMHP Coordinator

Are you tough enough to encourage someone to help?

… And what do I do if they say yes?

While the conversation with someone struggling mentally can be daunting, one of the things that I find makes it easier is knowing where the help is that I can point people towards. Having this information means that I don’t have to take responsibility for their troubles and I am encouraging them to people with more knowledge and tools than me who can then step in and provide the mental health assistance they may need.

Even though this can be scary I want you to think about getting someone to help a little bit like changing a tyre…

  • Some days we blow a tyre and we can sort that out ourselves.
  • Some days though the wheel nuts are a bit tight and we might need to ask a friend to help us loosen them.
  • And some days the studs are broken and we need to go to someone with specialist knowledge or tooling that can help us with that, like a mechanic.

Now our mental health is the same …

  • Some days maybe our work/life balance is out and we can sort that out ourselves.
  • Some days we might need to talk to our mate, just to get it off our chest.
  • But some days we might need to see someone who has more knowledge than us to help us sort out an issue.

Four of these options are:

GP – is a great confidential first point of call. They can rule out any underlying physical issue. GPs can link you to specialist services (counsellors, psychologists etc.) they can also do a confidential Mental Health Treatment Plan which gives you access to 20 sessions with a mental health professional at minimal to no cost each year.

Specialists Services (Counsellors, Psychologists or Social Workers) – they work around talk therapy. You can deal with a whole range of issues financial, relationship, gambling or just being overwhelmed. They may deal with the symptoms that are affecting you or maybe the underlying issue; whichever way, their job is to walk beside you to help you find the right answers for you. The key is not waiting until you have developed an illness but actually going to someone when things are starting to get on top of you.

Helplines – these can be either phone or video support. Some you might be familiar with is Lifeline 13 11 14, Beyond Blue Support Service 1300 224 636, MensLine 1300 789 978, NSW Mental Health Line 1800 011 511, Suicide Call back Service 1300 659 467, Black Dog Institute – www.blackdoginstitute.org.au. These are all great evidence-based resources that can help.

RAMHP – It’s us… remember we are local, practical people who can provide information or advice on the right sort of help for you or someone you are worried about. www.ramhp.com.au or 0477 343 628

So now you have four great options of help, I hope that you can be tough enough to encourage someone to seek help when they are struggling.

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