Hello Everyone! Today I am going to be talking to you about mental health, specifically – getting help. Which is the first step to your recovery. Just as a broken leg would get fixed, it's exactly the same with your mental health.
Both are just as serious, however in my experience mental health has been more serious and more of an issue for me.
Suffering/suffered from a number of mental illnesses myself, I can say first hand that it hasn't been easy, but it does get harder if you don't seek help. Like I mentioned earlier with a broken leg, you would go and see a doctor about that, so why not your mental health? I can't say that I've fully recovered from any of my mental illnesses, but they are nowhere near as bad as they used to be! And I put that down to working on myself, and being able to talk to professionals who work in mental health.
The first step of getting help is going to your GP, however it's not that easy! I am pretty sure that it’s legal to make appointments for yourself to go, however it would be a lot easier for a parent to go with you, because you can then be taken seriously and have the support from them. So I recommend you talk to them beforehand about this, don't just spring it on them randomly without having a mature conversation with them about this, or else they might not take you seriously. I know this is hard but it is so important. Communication is key!
I understand that some people might not have parents they are able to talk too easily, and this is literally the hardest thing ever!! It postpones your road to recovery and honestly I cannot say how terrible it is. However my mum is very supportive and I can open up to her, although it wasn't always this way! When my social anxiety was really bad and I asked to go back to CAMHS (UK Mental Health Service) she was convinced that social anxiety wasn't a real thing. So yeah, definitely get over that step before anything else, or it will make everything very hard! I can always write another article on how to talk to your parents about mental health etc. if you would like.
Now, don't get your hopes up when you go to your doctor. I'm not going to sit here and write that when you go to your doctor they will fix everything and all of your problems will go away. Because they will probably refer you to a mental health service (most likely CAMHS if you're in the UK and under 18) the waiting list can be 4-8 months. Yeah, I know, it’s ridiculous. You need to be prepared that your recovery will mainly be you working on yourself, because I have to say that I haven't found any of my counsellors very helpful, which is really sad for me to say, but it’s the honest truth. It’s good to have them there when I need them though, it's good knowing that you have support. So the mental health services in the UK really do suck at the moment, and it should NOT be this way! BUT this may not be the case with all people, because I've talked to some of my friends that go to camhs and some say they hate it and some say they love it! But it’s no harm in trying. Getting help is the first step to recovery. Please remember that when you go to the doctors do not feel embarrassed because they deal with it all the time – it's their job! If that doctor wasn't helpful to you, or didn't refer you for further help, you need to go and see another doctor. I know, its hard work to get help and it shouldn't have to be this way – but it's worth it.
Remember that Asking for help does not make you weak.
Teenagers With Experience is an online platform ran by teenagers for teenagers. We provide support through sharing our own experiences and providing advice based from this. If you need support, feel free to reach out to us on one of our social media platforms. We will do our best to support you and if we feel we cannot we will direct you to more suited, professional support.