My local GP to Charities...
Having both my daughters present when my GP came to my home. To explain, I had home treatment for 2 weeks, which involved a ‘nurse’ coming round every evening to check that I had taken my medication and talk to me for half an hour or so. I must admit, I travelled from my bed to the settee, ate unhealthy/rubbish food and had no physical strength. My mind had let go and I was running on empty. Home treatment advised me a lot and put me in touch with Citizens advice, who helped me organise Statutory Sick Pay and Housing Benefit.
Although previously I had paid all my bills, due to my extreme binges, all my savings had gone. My daughter helped me self-refer to ‘Turning Point’, who in turn gave me a personal key worker. They provided me with an advisor who supported me with expanding my purpose in life. For example, updating computer skills, helping me enrol in college ‘organic fruit and veg’ course & helping me organise my bills, finances, fares & filling in countless forms.
The key worker introduced me to:
1. Group therapy (there are various stages). People in similar situations with different backgrounds meet up twice a week and work with the group leader (a staff member), for free.
2. A ‘Shiatsu’ counsellor who gave me six sessions once a week (free). This relaxing exercise helped my mind and body to slowly build up strength. Amazingly it gave me a form of clarity as well.
3. My doctor referred me to St. Charles Hospital, to a department called ’Take Time To talk’. Here I had 8 sessions, once a week, an hour at a time on cognitive therapy (free). This helped me to see my patterns and started to give me the ‘mind tools’ to experiment in doing things differently, in the present and for the future.
4. Through the hospital reception and Turning Point I found leaflets on their information board and so joined Alliance Depression, Mind and Friends in Need (all free), charities who really do care and will support you. There are all sorts of ‘help’ ideas and activities, from walks, arts & craft, museum visits, concert invitations, meeting up for dinners at restaurants, swimming lessons, group exercise sessions and all sorts of other get togethers (all free).
I always remember what one of the staff members said to me on the phone, "This is about you having fun, nothing else, just fun". This really helped me not to be so scared. Of course, all of these things didn’t happen overnight and I took very small steps. After a while, I started to see a way of life & this triggered me to start to have a genuine smile on my face for the first time in years and a reason to get out of bed with joy.