Many people in the UK feel that they have no one to confide in about mental health, finances and relationships. This could be due to an array of reasons, including lack of time and an appropriate place to carry out such conversations. Everyone has their part to play if this trend is to be broken. As much as people tend to think that they need the perfect setting in order to open up to someone about such things, this is not the case. You should never wait for the best time or perfect place. Starting such a conversation might be hard, but that is simply what you should do. Regardless of where you are, feel free to talk to someone. If you still find that there are no chances to start the conversation, take advantage of the ‘Time to Talk Day’ that is usually on February 1st to unburden your heart.
This day is set to remind people that conversations are powerful, and that the simple steps everyone makes contribute to a better and mentally stable society. After it was discovered that more than 200,000 elderly people had not had any chance to talk to anyone in more than 30 days, the government decided to introduce a policy that included having a loneliness minister. Many people in the UK claimed to feel lonely always, and that is what the government is trying to combat.
When a relationship comes to an end and a couple files for a divorce, the parties that suffer the most are the kids. Many people fail to understand the pain and confusion children go through when this happens. They could even end up with mental problems. It is hard for any parent to tell their children that they have to be living with only one parent. Such children should be treated with a lot of love and caution; just like you would a person dealing with loneliness and mental illness. Find a gentle way to talk to such children.Below are some great tips on how to start conversations:
The fact that you might find it hard to start a conversation in person doesn’t mean you shouldn’t communicate with someone altogether. Sending someone a text message or leaving them a note is enough to start a conversation. With the advanced technology that is present, you can also make video calls to your friends regardless of how far they are from you.
A lot of people don’t know about mental problems and therefore, asking questions should be done with a lot of caution. Refrain from asking too personal questions and if you notice that the person is getting uncomfortable, take it easy and change the direction of the queries.
Try being honest and open with people you can trust. You could start by telling a good friend something they don’t know about your life. You will soon realise that sharing helps make things simpler. Just don’t succumb to anyone’s pressure to divulge more than you feel comfortable doing.
Even if you find out that a close friend has been diagnosed with a mental illness, it doesn’t mean they have changed. Illness or not, they are the same person and you should not treat them otherwise. Show your support without making it apparent that they have a problem.
Today, we are living in an age where people are communicating non-stop and more than ever using social media. This phenomenon is exacerbated by the way in which we live our lives, with work pressures, issues with money, and problems with personal relationships creating a toxic mix.
These concerns have been reflected in a recent BBC survey on mental health revealing that 66% of those questioned felt that they had no one to discuss their problems with.
It is very likely that many of those asked had specific reasons for their views brought about by the disintegration of their family situation. And even when a family is managing to hold it together, there will be huge barriers to resolving the key issues that are creating the internal conflicts.
"Time To Talk Day, taking place on February 1st is an attempt to break into this impasse. Many people just don't have the confidence or inclination to discuss their problems because quite simply, they feel they have no one to talk to and nobody who understands them.
When relationships breaks down, especially when children are involved, what all the parties are going through is complex and challenging. Each family member will have their own attitude and agenda regarding who has been responsible for causing the breakdown. Some may apportion blame to others whilst some may feel that they are personally responsible and there will no doubt be some taking of sides.
With so much at stake, skillful mediation will be needed to find a way forward.
Thankfully, such services are available, and whilst they may not be able to save the situation completely, through dealing with each element separately, suitable compromises can be reached.
In "Time To Talk" there is the opportunity for couples and families to take a strategic approach used by trained mediator to overcome awkward silences.
Firstly, to deal with the least contentious matters and from there to progress to those that are more difficult to resolve.
Secondly, to choose a suitable place where all participants feel comfortable and safe.
Thirdly, to phrase any questions in as non-judgmental way as possible. Any responses should also be non-threatening.
Fourthly, to resist urges to get to the core of a problem straightaway.
Confronting someone with a direct question may have the effect of making them clam up or worst, vent their anger at what you have said.
Finally, bear in mind that it is likely that couples or family members concerned may be in a hypersensitive state and very vulnerable to wrong things being said.
"Time To Talk" is an excellent step in the right direction.