Asking for Help is a Strength!
This #MentalHealthMatters was written by Beth Doolittle, Licensed Social Worker and Therapist (Intake and Emergency Services) at Ravenwood Health.
One of the most rewarding and satisfying aspects of my unique position working both in Intake with new clients, and in Emergency Services with clients experiencing mental health crisis, is that I see first-hand how community mental health services make a direct and immediate positive impact on a person’s mental health and overall wellbeing by providing the help they need – right at the point in time when they realize they need it. For various reasons, it can be hard for anyone to ask for help, and many people may not realize the wide range of resources available to help— and the first step is asking!
Interestingly enough, my experience working in mental health crisis intervention has taught me that there is often an unexpected silver-lining; a crisis can reveal that, in fact, there are more supports available to people than they had considered. For example: a person who comes to the realization they are completely overwhelmed, can no longer manage their substance use, and don’t know how to cope, maybe heard about the COPELINE from a loved one, and then makes the call and discovers that there are not only resources for substance use, but also help for financial complications, family concerns, peer support, the list goes on. Or maybe someone struggling with increasing despair and isolation, who suddenly recognizes a feeling of not wanting to be alive, then tells someone and discovers their ability to overcome those thoughts through therapy, connecting with peers, and feeling reassured that they are not alone.
It takes courage to recognize when you need help, and even more to ask for it. People frequently say they feel relieved, or say they feel ‘things will be okay’ just from taking that first step, reaching out and talking to someone. That’s the moment when I see people begin the transformation process— when the crisis suddenly turns into an opportunity. It is so rewarding for me personally and professionally to see that happening in real time, and to be part of the process helping people take those first steps on the path to wellness.
Beth is starting on the audiobook The Power of Vulnerability.