Mental health is a subject in the public eye a lot at the moment. As I write this I can easily name ten bloggers that are open and honest about their mental health struggles. This is something I’ve been reminded of in a uni lecture last week, a lecture about mental health and violence.
Mental health covers a whole range of disorders, illnesses and conditions. Often mental health disorders are portrayed horribly in the media. Newspapers are particularly awful for blaming violent incidents on those with mental health conditions. As a society we are being far more conscious and considerate of mental health conditions and related treatments but we do have a long way to go.
There is still very much this idea that crazy people are out wielding knifes and axes and attacking members of the general public. This is partly as a result of the media blaming violent behaviours on individuals who should be sectioned. In reality those suffering with depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder are not usually violent. And if they are it is often because of a trigger event or a lack of treatment. The lack of treatment is the area we should be focused on fixing. The bigger problem is that those with mental health problems are more likely to be victims of crime.
Mental health services are often very difficult to access. Some areas have year long waiting lists to receive an assessment. This means that sometimes those individuals don’t receive help until they have caused themselves or someone else harm. This is too late.
It’s brilliant that we as a society are encouraging people to ask for help but the help offered needs to be in a timely manner.
Charitys that you can contact:
Cruse bereavement care
Rape crisis England and Wales
Relate – for counselling regarding relationships
Samaritans – to talk about any problems at any time
Victim support – a service for those who have been victims of or witness to crime
So if you are reading this and aren’t sure where to go to ask for help either visit your GP or contact the charities above. Nhs website is also a good place to start.