As if feeling hopeless, self-defeated, and alone, wasn’t hard enough, you think to yourself, “But can’t everyone see that I’m hurting?” You wish that someone would come and free you from your thoughts, even if it were for just one day, let alone for just one hour. And now you are left to do perhaps the hardest thing you’ve ever had to do in your entire life, ask for help. You are lost and faced with the challenge of having to accept that you cannot do it all by yourself anymore. Something you’ve felt more than once, I’m sure.
So now what? You’ve told your friend, maybe a family member, or talked to a therapist twice and/or attended a support group once, but nothing is changing. You still feel lost. Asking for help is the first step. The second step is accepting it. Accepting that you might not have all the answers. Accepting that things will change. Accepting that your perspective on life may be flipped upside down. Accepting that your belief system might be challenged. Accepting a new support system while removing others.
With acceptance, comes a lot of responsibility and therefore, it is extremely important that you have a strong support network in place when making all of these adjustments. Being able to ask for help isn’t a weakness, but rather a sign of courage and strength. And being able to accept the help also isn’t a weakness, but rather a sign of willingness and growth.
A support system, I’ll take one of these
Some of you may find the help you need from friends and family, a support group, fitness, hobbies, the outdoors, traveling, church, self-help books, journaling, meditation and mindfulness techniques, and/or listening to podcasts. But for some, that might not be enough or you may not even know how or where to start. Therapy may help with the next steps. It could help you build a support system where YOUR needs are being prioritized.
Whoever you may find positive and trustworthy, it’s important to make these people a part of your community and use them as sounding boards for your thoughts. You shouldn’t have to feel like you have to do it all by yourself. You shouldn’t have to feel alone. You shouldn’t have to feel lost. Accept the help, accept the support and accept the love that comes with it all.
Below is a list of several free hotline numbers
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): 1-800-662-HELP (4357) They help locate behavioral health treatment facilities and other resources, such as support groups and counselors.
- National Hopeline Network: 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) They provide referrals to local depression treatment centers. Online chat service also accessible.
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) They provide a hotline and chat service Special hotline number for the hearing impaired: 1-800-799-4889.
- National Youth Crisis Hotline: 1-800-448-4663 They provide brief interventions and referrals to local counseling, treatment centers and shelters for youth.