Blog entry

Life update – helping to rebuild a person who has a mental health illness

I haven’t really felt like posting anything personal on my blog for a long time . This is mainly because my home life has been pretty stressful and it was something I had to be in the moment with. As a family we have been dealing with the struggles of mental health. I’m not going to go into detail about it as it’s not my story to tell.

I don’t know I just felt like I needed to get some of my thoughts and feelings down on paper or my blog to help me process them. Since I’ve had a blog I’ve written about some hard times. I find it pretty therapeutic. As it enables me to write in sequence all the thoughts and feelings that are going on in my head. Then once they are out I can try and deal with them and find away to overcome them.

Mental  health awareness

Helping someone with a mental health illness

The first thing that wizzes around my head is how unimpressed I have been with the mental health support systems within the NHS. I know that the NHS is very very busy at the moment and probably seeing a higher rate than normal people needing mental health treatment. Recently a family member was denied seeing the mental health crisis team because of their postcode. Fuming didn’t even describe how I felt at that moment . At that persons time of need a hospital told them sorry we haven’t got a crisis team for your area available and the team we do have available don’t cover your area.

The hospital they were at is actually the most local hospital to them .They were handed a piece of paper with a number on for their areas crisis team and were sent on their way.

Now let’s just put it this way my family member is lucky that they have family around them to help them get the support they needed . The thing is though what if the next person doesn’t . They are handed the same bit of paper with a number on. If they are not in a fit state are they going to call this number? Or could things get worse for them?

Luckily the nature of my work in childcare means over the years I have worked with many outside agencies and know how they work . To get things sorted sometimes you need to make a nuisance of yourself and that is what I did . Until we finally got the help we needed.

Along with my upset about the crisis team in the hospital . I feel our GP’s need to do more well that’s a generalisation the practise we go to . As 8 weeks after the initial mental health breakdown there has been no face to face conversations they have all been done over the phone. I understand we are in the middle of a pandemic but come on. How many times have you put your phone voice on and sounded like everything is okay when in fact it isn’t. It so much harder to hide this when your face to face with someone . Maybe they could get the help they needed quicker if they were just able to see their doctor face to face.

Mental health awareness

I also didn’t realise how one person’s mental health can affect so many people . It’s been such an emotional roller coaster and I don’t never know what emotion is coming next. I’m not even the one with the mental health illness and at times I find it hard and a bit too much . So god knows how they are feeling.

I’ve also never felt so useless in all my life. You see this person in front of you and there is nothing you can do to make them feel happier. There is nothing I can do or say to make them stop thinking the way they are . They have an inner voice which almost mutes anyone that’s trying to help . Trying to reason with them or just simply trying to keep them safe. It’s horrible.

You take the simplest of things like leaving your house or answering the phone for granted. For someone with a mental health illness this is a massive thing to do . The steps they go through in their head just to do something so little is massive. I have definitely learnt over the last few months that baby steps are key . Push too much and it could be detrimental to their recovery. Just like you do with children praise every little small step, without being patronising . Give them the opportunity to talk to you openly about how they feel and discuss what they would like to do next.

From my experience making sure the person with the mental health illness is in charge of their progression is key . You will need to be there to support them and sometimes cheer them on . At the end of the day though they need to feel comfortable , safe and happy with what they are doings

There is no real reasons to this post. It’s just basically a brain dump ! This is just half of what is wizzing round my brain but already I feel a little lighter for writing this . Now I don’t want any sympathy from this post . It’s not why I’ve written it but if you need help. Or like me are watching a person going through it and would like someone to talk to. Please just reach out to me . It’s hard but sometimes just talking to someone in a similar position really helps.

There is also loads of great information on the mind website you may find helpful.

2 Comments

  • Sarah Parton

    Bless you Jess, it must be so hard to watch someone you love going through this and feel helpless. Unfortunately mental health is still seen as a taboo subject which isn’t helped by not being able to access the help needed.
    Like you say if it’s a face to face chat you can’t hide how you feel but on the phone you can make people believe you’re ok.
    They are very lucky to have you and the rest of your family as support

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