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Deciding To Ask For Help

 

Member of staff Tal describes her recent, and current, struggles with mental health issues and how taking the plunge to ask for help was the hardest yet best thing she could have done.

 

Am I dishonest? A hypocrite? Maybe.

 

I say that, because I work for a company which talks openly and honestly about mental health, encouraging others to do the same. I’m also the person responsible for our social posts where I try to write about the importance of mental health and help Nick to de-stigmatise it.

How can I do that when I don’t follow my own advice?

Earlier in the year I finally decided to respect myself and get help. Asking for help can be one of the hardest things a person can do. Especially if you’re stubborn (like me) and are convinced you can sort your own shit out.

I’m told I’m often helping others but never helping myself. Often giving advice but never following it. I reached breaking point earlier this year and decided I couldn’t go on living life in a constant state of feeling rubbish (to couch it softly).

After years of denial and refusal to seek help, I’m now medicated and I am about to start CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) again for anxiety and depression. Why am I sharing this? It’s not easy for me. It was hard enough to ask for help, let alone tell thousands of my struggles (though as you can tell, I’ve kept enough privacy - that's not me up there on that photo!)

Firstly, to show that everybody has so much going on inside that might not be reflected on the outside. By definition, life was going pretty well for me when I decided to get help. I started here at FRAHM, I was no longer in a debilitating job and life had generally been going quite well. But I still felt horrible inside.

To echo that, although asking for help can be the hardest thing to do - it’s the biggest act of kindness you can give yourself. Asking for help has given me clarity, it’s given me courage and it’s allowed me to take my life back into my own hands.

I’m not cured, but taking those small incremental steps in the right direction has been an enormous weight off my shoulders. Take it from me (and all the experts!) talking helps hugely, and there are people out there that want to genuinely help you, whoever you are.

I still find talking about my mental health difficult and I think to some extent I always will. That’s something I’m trying to work on but that’s the beauty of it - mental health is a journey and no journey happens exactly as you envisioned it.

Keep talking & take care, Tal.

 

17 Responses

Colin Muse

Colin Muse

September 16, 2021

Hi
I am a recovering alcoholic and also suffer from depression.
I found Nick’s blog inspirational, I have already asked for help and am in a residential
recovery clinic.
It seems like our troubles are similar and I felt a real sense of deja vu reading his story and wish him all the best on his recovery journey.

Kindest regards
Colin

Rob

Rob

September 16, 2021

Fantastic story…..I myself am going through lots of struggles…..marriage break-up during Covid, extremely loneliness, burden of never ending debt due to ex wife unable to pay joint bills we had……missing my daughter, stress of my job and thoughts of suicided………..things I though I’d never thought I’d think about but you can help it at your lowest darkest times…….It’s nice to see success stories and I hope my life will be a success story too, well done 👍🏻

allyson bottrill

allyson bottrill

September 16, 2021

well done and you have given yourself courage by admitting you need help – to seek and talk about what is making you feel as you do is another huge step – i am a volunteer with THE FARMING COMMUNITY NETWORK (fcn.org.uk, their helpline number 03000 111 999) – a farming charity helping those in the agricultural community who have issues – mental health being one of the topics where we have most calls. It is ok not to be ok and talking to someone be they professional or friend is often the most difficult first step -

Paul M

Paul M

September 16, 2021

You have genuinely opened my mind. I want to talk , but not to registered organisations. I know that doesn’t make sense. I feel embarrassed. I’m a married father of four.(3 daughters, 1 son) all of which have left home in the last year. My wife and I loved and hated it at the same time. We now have a grandson (18 months old) he’s my world. But I have now turned to drink and drugs ( cocaine) I hate myself for it, I’m respected by many and asked for advice. I talk the talk and go out of my way to help people. But I can’t help myself. I let my family down constantly and beat myself up for it. I’m miserable with my closest loved ones. Yet make out to others that life is good. I hide my problems from everyone whilst doing my best to make them happy. People thank me for my advice and tell me They are glad they spoke to me!! Why can’t I take my own advice? Why can’t I listen to my own mind? I’m stubborn, have a dry sense of humour, I’m liked by many, disliked by more. That doesn’t bother me one bit. I have lived a reasonable life, been skint, been well off. Blown thousands. I am now in my late 40’s, don’t own a house, no pension, no savings. My daughters will soon want to get married and I can’t give them the help a father should give them. I don’t want sympathy, I don’t want pitty.I just wish I had the strength and the will power to be the person Iwant to be and stop being the person I pretend to be. I think about ending it every day, but I can’t and won’t put that on the people I love. Life is shit, but it’s my own doing. This is the first time I’ve ever spoken about this . If I get nasty comments, I’ll laugh and take it. I’ll carry on as I always do. I just don’t want to drag people I love down with me. I have to be honest, I’d never heard of Frahm until I saw a Facebook post. I clicked on the page and liked and commented on a jacket up for grabs. I read the back story, the way life has turned around, how low life was. How, if you have the bollocks to ask for help, don’t be embarrassed,tell people you’re problems, life can only get better. Day by day. I want that for myself. But more than that, I want it for my family. X

mike wharton

mike wharton

September 16, 2021

Heartwarming to read, this would also be great on linkedin where it can be shared. We’ll done for showing amazing courage and resilience. You’ll be fine.

Mike Morgan

Mike Morgan

September 16, 2021

Talking about my feelings is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, I’ve never really giving writing my thoughts down as a positive proactive thing to do, but after reading this iam going to give it a go to see where it takes me..iam only now receiving counselling after a nearly a year since my overdose, the second time I’ve tried to take my life,..
Thanks

Andy

Andy

September 16, 2021

I’ve not been in a situation as bad as yours sounds, but it seems to me that asking for help is the first and most difficult step of all in helping to heal yourself. Well done for doing so and good luck for the future. You certainly seem to be in a work environment that should help.

Rich

Rich

September 16, 2021

I’ve had my first session of counselling today after feeling overwhelmed looking after 3 children and working throughout Covid. I’ve been trying to ‘put on a brave face’ but realised I needed some support for myself so I can be there for my wife and children. Thank you for words above. It helps to know I’m not alone.

Len Scap

Len Scap

September 16, 2021

Thank you so much Tal and Nick for your honesty, your courage and for just sharing.
Sent this on to a family member who has recently gone through something similar.

James French

James French

September 16, 2021

Hello Tal. For me this is a spiritual issue and I realise the very word ‘spiritual’ can immediately conjure up images of ‘religion’ and other fear based teachings. Personally spirituality is connecting with your higher self, the soul or whatever we wish to call it and seeing the world as a place of learning for us to achieve higher states of consciousness ,to increase our vibration. I believe we are multi dimensional immortal beings having a 3D experience and that we are here to learn specific learnings to enable us to to this. I had a life changing experience several years ago and went on to do things I would never have imagined doing (I learnt hypnotherapy and Past Life Regression therapy etc). Of course I’m still working on ‘finding my joy’ and this life is a challenging experience but have found that our pain lies in the dimension of the ego, where we believe in our labels (our name etc) . It’s an amazing journey! I really hope you get some positive results from the CBT and let me know how you are doing.

Jon Cheeseman

Jon Cheeseman

September 16, 2021

❤️

Steve cox

Steve cox

September 16, 2021

Well done. Very brave post.

Mark D

Mark D

September 16, 2021

Good blog.
Those I know who have asked for help, have mostly found it.
The more you talk and are open (within boundaries), the more people you wil find are on or have the same journey, and the more likely you are to find the right access to the right help quickly.

John Brennan

John Brennan

September 16, 2021

Tal, great message. I sound as stubborn as you! I think my thoughts stem from being an only child and not really having a big social group as a child; sort out my own feelings and look after myself.

As I’ve got older, married, children and all the things you are expected to do I carried on thinking all was well. Sadly, it wasn’t. I made some decisions and my world flipped upside down overnight. It’s tough to battle through that, it’s a long process and something you absolutely need to speak to someone about to help process, vent, be understood, be listened to and to move on day to day.

Mental health is so easily misunderstood, and admitting a “problem” is seen as a weakness and has other negative connotations. The world is changing and becoming more aware and more accepting.

I think situational or event driven anxieties are easier to acknowledge and deal with; still takes courage. Overall though, you always need to look after yourself, and talk.

Anyway, thank you for sharing. All the best!

David Heyburn

David Heyburn

September 16, 2021

Well done on reaching out. It’s often the helpers who forget to put their own oxygen mask on that quietly break. Its just as common for it to happen when you are in place of safety rather than a debilitating job as you described. I suspect that was survival mode.
Good on you for seeking out the help. I wish you well on the journey 😀

suekenny22@hotmail.com

suekenny22@hotmail.com

September 16, 2021

I think it’s very brave t talk at work about Mental health, My son started a new job last week, Today he is in the office for the first time in over 12 months, he says he is ok? How can I help? Please x

michael cluer

michael cluer

September 16, 2021

I found CBT very helpful

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