Mental health issues
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Time to Talk about mental health

Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,731 Disability Gamechanger
Today is the Time to Change day of mental health awareness called Time To Talk. They say:

Around 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem this year yet the shame and silence can be as bad as the mental health problem itself. Your attitude to mental health could change someone’s life.

Here on the community, we talk about all aspects of life as a disabled person and that includes mental health challenges.  We are proud that the community is a place where people feel secure enough to share their experiences and that there is such a warm and positive response between our members.  Thank you for being such a great community.



Talking about mental health can be tough, but there is no right way to start this conversation.  It is just about being there for someone and recognising that sharing your own experiences can be so so helpful to others who are also struggling.

There are lots of ways to get involved today, take a look at some of the materials available.  The Time for Change website has a few tips on how to get the conversation started, you can read their full article about the tips here.  

Start small

Find a good time and place

Ask questions (gently!)

Be open

Treat them the same


Let us know what this day means to you.  How have you found talking about your mental health? Do you feel supported? What could others do to help you speak out? How do you feel when talking about your mental health?
Scope
Senior online community officer

Replies

  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Sam_Scope   I would like to start may I be so bold.  Understanding and being there as a support is I believe for myself the top priority.  Thank you SCOPE and the team.

    Having to talk to some one about what is happening is important for me.  Especially if I chat to some one similar on the forum.

    My issues and problems started way back from a time long ago when discussing health and mental well being.  I had a childhood and early adult hood where these sorts of issues were not addressed.

    I had symptoms anxiety and depression in my early years of childhood and teens.  Then it was never discussed and even though I was not well.  Had the thoughts and feelings made worse by drink and drugs.  My pleas were ignored by Doctors and my Mother.

    I know this because one Doctor took time out to read my case notes and had me sat down.  Talking what was happening to me.  I asked why all that time.  He said in those days a lot of medical views, opinions on the subject are very much his words swept under the carpet.  I can recall him now saying that now.

    He saw that every time I had a drink caused by anxiety then reaching for another made the symptoms worse.  Went into rehab and got sorted.  Always there though most days this urge to have a drink.  No matter how much therapy you have.

    I know in the last mental health charity they did not like me talking about the relation between mental health and addiction.  Got put down.  Not the only place.

    One Christmas got permission to talk about the connection.  I was the first to start suddenly a few more started.  There were tears, there were looks of silence, there were the doubters.  People could not understand how having  addiction in relation to mental health.  These were the drinkers of the group of people.

    Since that day I thought it would be advisable in my humble opinion to see if I could help any body.  In similar problems.  I was in for a shock.  My support worker explained in simple terms.  Policy of this charity is to the staff to deal with it.  In her words.  Hang on we are the ones with mental health.

    Problem shared, problem addressed with compassion and understanding.  I said I am there for others.  All I ever got was this reaction of we are a mental health charity and we will help you.  At the same time you can not talk about yourself in front of others.  Please can I say then if they wish to and want to talk why not.

    I am same as them.  They may feel comfortable talking to another gentleman of similar age.  I had met a lot of gentlemen my age and similar problems.  Who wanted to deal with their issues.  Found it hard to discuss with a female support worker.  I was one of those and still am.

    That is the big problem in my opinion getting over the barrier and being aware that if you need to talk.  Some one has the time to listen, have tolerance, patience.

    I have been there all too proud gentleman to discuss what is effecting me mentally and what is bothering me.

    When I first had a lady support worker from a mental health charity.  I did not speak for about ten minutes.  She sat at one end of the sofa I sat the other end silence.  In the beginning it was a struggle to speak and say how am I.

    So every time I applied for help, support it was all female support staff.  I had to try to cope and would have been ideal to have a male support worker.  Position now is that I do find it some times being honest about my feelings, emotions.

    By way got great support and help same old story funding and budgets tight.  I was talking to some one yesterday about this.  On a waiting list nearly three months.  This person I was chatting to, recognised me from a previous charity he been with.

    That is whole nub of mental health lack of funding, support and help.

    Hope you OK nice to talk to you Take care.
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    I don't think the biggest problem is that people can't or don't want to talk about Mental Health issues but that, face to face, too many people are embarrassed to be on the receiving end of such discussions and simply don't want to know.

    I have always been prepared to have such discussions especially face to face but I seem to be in the minority out there in the wide world.

    People do tend to open up more anonymously in places like this not realising, I suppose, that it shows their difficulties in discussing things generally. There is a shame factor but that is more imposed upon us by the listeners rather than the problem itself.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
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  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Victoriad   I agree with you here.  Great some one making me realise yes we need to really talk about mental health.

    Stop treating us all who wished and wanted to have a career like we are not strange, not mad and nuts as my father once described what I was going through.

    All of us want to have a life treated equally and respected.  I do not want to walk around on eggshells talking what is bothering me.  As I explained once to a team manager of a charity I was in .

    That's a laugh team manager which team hers or ours.  Spent more time battling with this woman.  Trying to get her to wake up and see the light.

    I would any body out there have a look some time your NHS service and if in a charity any conferences on mental health.  Try and go please.

    I started a long time ago started to go to these NHS days open forums.  Where the local NHS trust wants views, opinions on such matters.  You sit with the real people who are pulling the strings.  My best bit is sitting with people like your self.  Great day out get a bite to eat plus your expenses paid.

    The charity sent to a conference run by the Head Office and well it was very eye opening.  Two days of discussion meeting others from areas of the country.  Interesting.

    I came away very much aware of how and why and a lot of mental health services are dealt with in this country.

    That is when you really know what the hell is going on.

    It is right that you comment it is not OK I agree totally.  I seen the problems and issues not only with my health but others who were friends at the time.

    Some thing wrong here when I get the phone call in the morning from one of my friends.  Waiting and waiting for support worker or CPN.  To turn up.  Also he needs a breakfast or some thing else.  It is me turning up helping him.

    Remember I am ill too and the two of us assisting each other.  Much as we can.  I understand the system and the overloading of people and the long hours.  Not much time for each patient.  If it is not working what is the answer, I do not know.

    All I know is that I spent an awful lot of my time trying to understand my self and others.

    Take care.
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
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  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @Victoriad Thank you for reply.  This is my point I understand you are angry and annoyed and all emotional here.  I feel it.  I get all of this.

    My story I have never been in a mental hospital close though.  A lot of my issues are with employers and welfare and the job centre plus not now one or two doctors I have.

    I believed one time I wanted to work nothing to hold me back.  Disability and illness I get a job.  Unfortunately how wrong am I.  I even had this amazing idea I know set up another business.

    I will employ every one who I know like yourself and others.  Be a company to be proud of.  Community based giving back   Have a wide spectrum of our community.

    Then the big boys from the legal department started on me.  Refused me funding.  Got to employ every one regardless being who they were  Breaking laws.  Whoa Whoa I said hang I can not get employed because of my health and disability.

    I have friends and people who I have met are being discriminated against.  I want to employ disabled, any one in life's social spectrum who can not get a job.  Regardless of colour, creed, ethnic ,religion, transgender.  The attitude well was mind blowing.

    It was the early 90's and the laws then were all against us.  I have the respect and awe for those want to work.  Plus those who are working.  Who have mental illness and disability.  Whatever the medical condition they have.

    I know my situation was every two years fit to work regardless if I was ill in my doctors eyes and me.  This is the problem is it not.

    I do not know what to say or advise to you about your doctor.  This I agree needs to be resolved.  It is not good I sense the heartbreak and angry tone.

    I had this once I recall I was in his eyes fit the doctor. The employers refusing to give a permanent contract.  Instead giving me a rolling two weeks.  The out come not good.  This the old days of those horrible schemes some of us had to endure.

    I wonder if it is possible to speak to SCOPE advisors always on this.

    Take care always here to listen


    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
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  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    [email protected] thank you.  I hope you get all the support you can get.  


    What we all need is a curry in a hurry.  Some thing to relax and chill.  Give me some ten minutes or so just middle of writing it out.

    So I will post this for every one to share.  Especially the Delia's and Gordon's amongst you all.

    I am Gino the Italian Stallion in the Kitchen.  My other name.

    Take care
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 1,756 Listener
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  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    @Victoriad I am sorry to hear of your troubles and only wish I had some advice to give. Unfortunately I have run into much the same reasoning from GP's and have never found a way to deal with it. Without the support of a GP life becomes very complicated needlessly. I am glad though that at least you seem to have some support at home.

    If there were some way I could help then I would but then I am like that a lot of the time, often putting others problems ahead of my own. One thing that sometimes keeps me going is helping others.

    Never worry about ranting. One thing that a place like this does for us is to give us a place to let off steam.

    In an ideal world ofc being completely open and honest would be a good thing. Unfortunately we live in a society of secrets and deception. Simply telling the sick and ill to be more open about things isn't going to work. All society needs to be given, understand and take on the message. Sadly I doubt this will never happen.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 1,756 Listener
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  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    Lol! I cannot remember the last time I went to the cinema, I am too scared of having to stand up or move about to ease the pain spasms or even leave altogether because I cannot sit through a complete film. I envy you in that respect.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
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  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,263 Pioneering
    @Victoriad I will try to look into that.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
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