Christmas on the Mind infoline
Posted Wednesday 8 December 2010
For my final blog of 2010 I thought I would pick a seasonal topic. With the weather having taken a turn for the worse in the build up to Christmas and the whole country affected by the snow I have taken quite a few calls that have highlighted the problems it can cause for people. I have spoken to several people this week who have been affected by the lack of their usual support network, due to the severity of the snow in some areas of the country.
One caller said that he was really worried about not being able to get to a local service that he had been using. He was worried about what might happen if he could not get any help while the weather was so poor, and that the progress he had made would be lost. I spoke to him about some alternative support including other charities offering telephone-based help and a helpline that gave specific support for his diagnosis.
Over the past few weeks I have also spoken to people who have been experiencing another problem with the change of the season. While the days have been getting shorter, and especially since the clocks changed, we have received calls from people experiencing seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Some of the callers were looking for specific help such as light therapy. We actually have a booklet about SAD which includes details about treatments such as light therapy and contact information for organisations who can provide those treatments as well, so this has been really useful for these callers.
The festive season can brings up particular issues for people such as remembering the loss of a family member or the possibility of being lonely, without the support of family and friends to help them. One caller wanted to know how to access a befriending service to ensure she had support this Christmas. She said she had only just heard about it and thought it was a brilliant idea.
Also, as we are only a few weeks away from Christmas we have been receiving calls asking about the Mind Christmas cards which are available from the website as well as some local Mind associations directly. Our Christmas cards are a great way to support Mind and to raise awareness of our work!
Peter and the Mind infoline team speak to around 100 callers each day on a variety of subjects. Please donate to the Big Give challenge today and support the helpline throughout January. Starting on Monday 6 December, every gift to the Big Give challenge will be doubled, making your donation go twice as far.
Peter, Mind infoline worker
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