Mental Health

Completed a mental health first aid course, yes just like those first aid courses we often have to do for our workplace which include CPR, etc. except that this one focused on how to assist someone having an episode or drama in their life from the stranger in the supermarket, to a colleague or neighbour, etc. At least 1 in 5 people do experience a mental health issue so if not us then we would all know someone affected.

Here is sunny oz our top mental health “disorders” are:
Anxiety, depression, substance misuse, bipolar, schizophrenia – that’s in order and of course some will have a blend of these.

Under substance misuse 5.1% – alcohol accounts for a hefty 4.3% of that total; then weed, amphetamines [ice, speed], cocaine, inhalants.

Many will have a few episodes of the above which are only deemed a “mental disorder” by the DSMV [psychiatrists diagnostic manual 2013], when the episodes or usage affects a person’s behaviour, thoughts and emotional state which disrupts their ability to work or carry out other daily activities and engage in satisfying relationships.

We gained insight on how to approach, assess and assist; listen without judgment; give information; encourage professional and other support – please visit their website as these courses are taught in 23 countries or can be done on-line

How has mental health impacted on your life?


  1. Excellent info and reminders, Kate! This is something that needs to be talked about more. If it was, I think people would become more sensitive, understanding, and helpful to other people. Thank you for sharing what you’ve learned. And thank you for the link.
    I can’t imagine anyone today has not been impacted by mental illness. Related to themselves, family members, or friends.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My maternal grandfather, my mother, her sister – my aunt, myself, a raft of cousins (from the sister with the issues, and from their other sister who was unaffected by whatever this trait IS) and now nephew (one that I know of) and nieces (maybe two of those). I have a sister in law who suffers from chronic depression. I suffer from that as well, and I am (depending on whom you speak to) bipolar (II), and on the mild end of the spectrum of autistic. I also suffer from social phobia and anxiety to a high degree. I know all this because I’ve studied it from the time I was diagnosed in my 20s. My mother was institutionalized twice for her problem, which was never diagnosed properly…a sibling and myself have come to the conclusion Ma probably had borderline personality disorder. Her sister with the issues has full blown narcissistic disorder. That sister’s children (my cousins) have varying degrees of narcissism (one child), depression, social anxiety and phobia. And all I can say to all of this? Thanks grandpa. Thanks a whole LOT! There is a genetic component to our mental health problems I’m sure. Grandpa was never formally diagnosed, but he was alcoholic and abusive. And he was nuts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • wow Mel what a history … but with correct diagnosis comes useful treatment! Can’t imagine life is a joy but you have learnt to manage. Guessing that being one of so many is no compensation 😦
      Thanks for sharing, wish more could be so open 🙂


  3. I’ve been seeing a Psychologist, off and on for the last ten years, I suffer anxiety, panic attacks, and mild depression, but basically my psychologist get me back on when I have my attacks…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have often noticed and experienced that many around me are closed to the idea of accepting the fact that somebody is going through a state of mental agitation. They brush it off by calling it overreaction! I have faced it myself and been ridiculed! I find that quite surprising? Why deny?

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  5. This is such a crucial aspect of our lives today. There are so many mental health issues, and so much is swept under the carpet. The more people trained to assist and support the better.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I have always expressed the view that if you are not, from time to time, suffering from depression and/or anxiety then you are probably not paying attention.

    I don’t mean to trivialise anyone’s personal experiences by that comment nor pretend to be in any way qualified to speak on the subject. I just think that the sooner we accept the fact that mental illness in its mild form is as common as a cold and in its most severe forms more dangerous than cancer then the sooner we start moving forward.

    And so …. if one needs to find empathy for sufferers then one only needs to look inward. And then multiply that by about 100.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A healthiest looking person could be silently fighting a mental health issue …….. many of them go unnoticed.
    It’s very important to spread awareness …..detach stigma and look for signs. …….a lot of people are afraid to ask for help ….but they need it the most.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are so right! That is why here in Australia we try to train people from various cultures to help deal with mental health issues eg Aboriginal people and our various migrant groups. Cultural context has a huge impact for support, etc so thanks for mentioning it!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I have a master’s degree and license in professional counseling, and one thing that bothers me is how we tend to think people are either “mentally ill” or “mentally healthy.” It’s an “Us vs. Them” mentality, and while it may make people feel safer about their own well-being, it’s ultimately incorrect. If you’re enduring significant life stress in multiple areas of your life (poverty, death of a loved one, lack of social support, domestic violence, and so on), and on top of that, you don’t have healthy coping skills, you too could reach your breaking point.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I can definitely see the logic of training like that. I must admit, I’d have no idea how to cope if someone suddenly had an episode next to me. I wouldn’t be of much use to myself, the other bystanders, or the patient.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. As a chiropractic physician, it has exposed me to the reality of how widespread mental health issues are. Medications addressing depression are the third most popular prescription written today. In most cases, pills (by themselves) are not designed to FIX conditions they are used to “treat.” There is certainly justification to use pharmaceuticals AS PART OF A TREATMENT PLAN in various cases, but this is not typically how they’re used. Until people are willing to accept personal responsibility and commit themselves to participating in improving the quality of their health, the pharmaceutical industry will continue to profit while mental health issues continue to rise.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree that meds are only part of the treatment plan hence I volunteer with an NGO who support people to face responsibility for their own health. They do it individually and in groups but so many come to the groups expecting a ‘cure’ … it’s hard work to know ourselves and take personal responsibility to ensure back up plans are in place, recognise triggers, etc. It’s a big task but the only way forward!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Empathy and kindness are great qualities, if we all had them our world would be a much better place!

      I’ve often found that those facing the real challenges, such as living with a mental health disorder, often develop other amazing qualities – my favourite poets and comedians had diagnoses.

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