"My Psychologist says that ......"
Wouldn't it be great if people said this more often ? (Rhetorical or Not ?)
The stigma attached to admitting that a person sees or has seen a Psychologist has decreased somewhat over the last few Decades in Australia.
However it's still here !
I advise my clients not to tell their Employer or Work Colleagues that they have a mental health issue unless they absolutely have to.
I don't want them to experience being under the microscope from the Boss or the person who gets the blame for mistakes from their colleagues.
Besides, many Health Insurance policies including Income Protection preclude Mental Health Issues.
Mental Health Issues are invisible injuries but are really no different to a broken leg if correct treatment is observed. The leg is incapacitated in plaster for about 6 weeks. Then maybe a smaller cast is put on for another short period. Then when the cast is no longer necessary, crutches and Physiotherapy are the go. Even when completely healed, muscle memory still remains and a patient can find their leg giving way unexpectedly.
We seem to fear what we cannot see or what we have no experience with.
So many patients have said to me that their family, friends, loved ones and work colleagues. just tell them
"Get over it and get on with it !"
"Stop making a fuss about nothing"
"Stop playing the victim"
"Go and get a job. That will fix it"
"Pull yourself together. It will pass"
They feel pressured, made fun of, dismissed, blamed, avoided and worst of all invalidated and disrespected.
Supporting someone with mental health issues need not be a burden if sensible boundaries are observed. Often it's the little things that count. A smile, a wave, a chat. a coffee, a helping hand can be all that is needed.
All things in moderation.
If supporting someone is getting onerous and causing stress, don't withdraw totally from them ! Instead, help them to reach out for extra support from a Psychologist.
You may be saving a life .....
Louise Smith PSYCHOLOGIST
(Assoc MAPS) (QCT), B. A. (Hons) (Psych) (Japanese & Music), Dip. T. Prim. & Spec. Ed.(Hearing Impaired)
Enoggera Health Practice - Brisbane Queensland Australia
Make Positive Life Changes
- Improve Assertiveness and Self Esteem
- Deal with Trauma, PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Anger and Stress
- Cope with Workplace Issues - Team work, Setting Goals, Problem solving
When you or someone you know needs help (In Australia)
- SANE Australia (people living with a mental illness) – call 1800 187 263.
- beyondblue (anyone feeling depressed or anxious) – call 1300 22 4636 or chat online.
- Black Dog Institute (people affected by mood disorders) – online help.
- Lifeline (anyone having a personal crisis) – call 13 11 14 or chat online.
- Suicide Call Back Service (anyone thinking about suicide) – call 1300 659 467.