G’day Everyone.

I have been pondering this topic for a while and I am still not sure how to address it correctly but I will give it my best shot.

What do you think of when you hear Mental Health issues?

I bet if you are Military or EMS you automatically think PTSD yeah?

Well here is something I bet you didn’t know and that is there are nearly 300 mental disorders listed in the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). This is a handbook used by health professionals to help identify and diagnose mental illness.

These range from.

• Mood Disorders

• Anxiety Disorders

• Personality Disorders

• Psychotic Disorders (Schizophrenia)

• Trauma-Related Disorders (PTSD)

• Substance Abuse Disorders

And so many more.

So lets have a chat about some of these.

PTSD is but one of many disorders and unfortunately has a pretty bad name in the Veteran community. With this I mean the second someone says they are struggling mentally people often jump the gun and go straight to “what is he whinging about he hasn’t done anything the weak !&&t”

Don’t worry about the other 300 conditions that are out there the person may have!

The reason I bring this up is the fact that recently I have had people question me about what I do and why I am such a massive advocate on it all.

Why are you getting involved with the lads on base, it’s not your place? Or they are snowflakes! Or they are only after a quick buck from DVA!

These are all real points that have been said to me.

Well my thing is I will always take mental health seriously, I have been in a dark place myself, why? I still dont know and I am working on that everyday. I wouldn’t wish this upon anyone as it’s not a nice position to be in and being in a dark place is so hard and draining on yourself and those around you.

Don’t get me wrong everyone is entitled to their own opinions and that’s cool and all but seriously take a good hard look at yourselves before you do.

Substance Abuse – How common do you think this is, would you class sitting there getting on the cans every night as abuse or drinking until you black out every weekend? Self medicating? Taking pain relief that isn’t prescribed for you? Dabbling in a variety of medicines prescribed and not prescribed?

Anxiety Disorders – Finding youself making excuses to not go out and socialise? Not leaving the comfort of your own home? Having panic attacks when you go out?

Mood Disorders – Depression? Major Depression? Lashing out at loved ones in fits of anger? Being angry all the time?

I could really go on and on about all this but you get the point.

This mentality about mental health really needs to stop, people need to stop talking ill of one another. Just be there for your mates and stop judging and neglecting them.

Just my thoughts I have had recently.

Now please correct me if I am wrong with how I have described some of these but I am doing all my own homework here and it’s getting hard hearing all of the negativity out there, especially when it comes from those close to you.

Cheers

Wally

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