Throw Someone A Lifeline Today and ask “R U OK?”

This week I’m going slightly off topic for a good cause and linking up with Gemma from My Big Nutshell for RU OK Day.

This post isn’t going to be a long one and the contribution I’m looking for won’t cost you a cent. There are lots of other people writing about their own personal experiences with depression and its devastating impact on their lives and the lives of those around them. When I first considered taking part in this link up I didn’t think I’d have any really  direct personal experiences to share. Life’s been kind to me so far, with more of life’s ups than downs to have to deal with. As I mulled over the topic during the last few weeks I started to count up the number of people that I and my family have known over the years who have been affected by depression and I started to realise they really did reflect the statistics. One in five of of us will experience depression at some point in our lives.

The symptoms of depression can manifest in different ways for different people and I am in no way an expert on the topic. The common thread that runs through the situations that have touched my experience of depression is that these people, despite significant challenges in their lives presented outwardly as very positive and bubbly people with everything to live for.

Today, Thursday 15 September, 2011 is R U OK?Day. It’s a national day of action which aims to prevent suicide by encouraging Australians to connect with someone they care about and help stop little problems turning into big ones.

On that day we want everyone across the country, from all backgrounds and walks of life, to ask family, friends and colleagues: “Are you OK?”.

Staying connected with others is crucial to our general health and wellbeing. Feeling isolated or hopeless can contribute to depression and other mental illnesses, which can ultimately result in suicide. Regular, meaningful conversations can protect those we know and love.

It’s so simple. In the time it takes to have a coffee, you can start a conversation that could change a life. You don’t need to leave a comment here. Just pop next door, hop in the car, pick up the phone and ask someone “R U OK?”

The R U OK website has some guidelines on how to start this conversation here

The following are some recommended help and information contacts:

General

SANE www.sane.org

Beyondblue www.beyondblue.org.au

Black Dog Institute www.blackdoginstitute.com.au

Young people

headspace www.headspace.org.au

ReachOut! www.reachout.com

Youth

beyondblue www.youthbeyondblue.com

Culturally and linguistically diverse and Aboriginal backgrounds

Multicultural Mental Health Australia www.mmha.org.au

Local Aboriginal Medical Service www.vibe.com.au



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  1. Such a simple question but one that can make a huge difference. I’m popping by after I read your comment on Karen’s post on Wonder and you know what? Again, I am left thinking of LAST CHILD IN THE WOODS. Nature has a huge impact on depression adn I think what Louve said about subscribing a walk instead of a pill is something to consider. I don’t want to make depression seem simply fixed at all, I know it is more than this but what he said in that book just makes sense. Nature heals the mind and spirit!

    1. Thanks for dropping by Gillian. I’m on the same page. I get cabin fever if I don’t get out and one of the reasons I started writing this blog was to motivate me to get my children out as much as possible. The effect on us all when we get outside is measureable. I’m a big fan of Louvre, I must get his next book for a read over Christmas!

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