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What are the biggest barriers to good overall mental health?

MikeMike 🖥️🎧LandaanPosts: 3,342 Community Manager
Interested to hear what you all think about this! Thinking on a large scale, what do you think the biggest barriers are to young people having overall good mental health?

Do you think The Mix could do anything it's not already doing to reduce those barriers? Either here on the community, or more widely in society. :)
All behaviour is a need trying to be met.

Comments

  • coc0maccoc0mac Posts: 806 Part of The Mix Family
    I'm not sure if I will articulate this right; however, I think elder generational beliefs play a part!

    What I mean by this: things like mental health, sexuality, gender identity - they weren't spoken about or explored anywhere near as much as they are now in the past. Some adults are very open to learn about this, to encourage conversations and to open their minds the more they become educated. Sadly, many others aren't and I think this really gets in the way of young people feeling safe and free to be who they want to be. As a result, young people may be less likely to talk about how they feel as a warm reception just doesn't feel like a guarantee. Does that make sense?

    I also think there are a lot of issues with the existing MH services. They are underfunded and oversubscribed for sure, but also the care that young people receive when they finally access support isn't always positive. Again, this makes people less likely to talk - either talking again, or even at all.

    The Mix do a great job. Something that I do love is Young Mind's 'parent helpline' - a place for parents to turn to when they aren't quite sure how to support their child. I assume you can't 'copy' that idea, but anything for parents may be a good shout!
    lovemimoonAislingDM
  • Salix_alba_2019Salix_alba_2019 Posts: 1,239 Wise Owl
    From what I've experienced so far, it's definitely a lack of diversity in the mental health sector. With diversity comes and extra understanding of cultural differences and experiences that one can only truly empathise with is they have a connection to it. By doing so will allow people to feel comfortable in sharing and create an overall satisfaction of the service that they've received.
    lovemimoonAislingDM
  • MikeMike 🖥️🎧 LandaanPosts: 3,342 Community Manager
    coc0mac wrote: »
    I'm not sure if I will articulate this right; however, I think elder generational beliefs play a part!

    What I mean by this: things like mental health, sexuality, gender identity - they weren't spoken about or explored anywhere near as much as they are now in the past. Some adults are very open to learn about this, to encourage conversations and to open their minds the more they become educated. Sadly, many others aren't and I think this really gets in the way of young people feeling safe and free to be who they want to be. As a result, young people may be less likely to talk about how they feel as a warm reception just doesn't feel like a guarantee. Does that make sense?
    This is a really interesting point @coc0mac! I guess young people (in wider society) are in the minority, with older generations making up most of the population and holding some of those outdated beliefs. I wonder if that also plays a part in why people in positions of power can be closed minded - they're usually not of younger generations.

    Totally agree that mental health services need revamping too. I wonder if over-subscription and under-resourcing can be the cause of that sub-par treatment?

    Content and support for parents is really interesting too. Definitely an idea we can pin. :)

    From what I've experienced so far, it's definitely a lack of diversity in the mental health sector. With diversity comes and extra understanding of cultural differences and experiences that one can only truly empathise with is they have a connection to it. By doing so will allow people to feel comfortable in sharing and create an overall satisfaction of the service that they've received.
    Couldn't agree more with this @Salix_alba_2019. :) The knock-on effect of diversity in support (or anywhere) is huge, and that 'true' empathy is so powerful.
    All behaviour is a need trying to be met.
    coc0mac
  • lovemimoonlovemimoon Posts: 37 Boards Initiate
    Similar to what @Salix_alba_2019 said, diversity.

    Many people come from different cultural backgrounds and I believe it's not just within the heritage but rather the way we present ourselves as well. Thick accents, the way we speak, our gestures, and so forth. Sometimes, the lack of cultural competency can lead to dangerous misdiagnoses.
    AislingDM
  • AislingDMAislingDM Posts: 27 Boards Initiate
    I totally agree with everything that has been said! Lack of cultural competence is a big problem for therapists out there which is very sad :(

    I also think another big problem is young people being invalidated by MH professionals. For example, being patronised, misrepresented, or just straight up told that your mental health needs are not the way that you are experiencing them. I think sometimes people want to downplay the severity of some young people's mental health because it can be an uncomfortable thing to talk about and not everyone is prepared to acknowledge just how pervasive mental ill health is.

    I think The Mix does a great job at trying to validate people by affirming that their experiences are real and 'as bad' as they say they are, rather than asking for 'proof' or saying this is not the case <3
    lovemimoon
  • lovemimoonlovemimoon Posts: 37 Boards Initiate
    Agree with @AislingDM on the feeling of invalidation.

    We are at an age where the attitudes towards mental health are changing for the better but I can't help but feel like people still don't fully understand the full context of mental health and how much it impacts our lives. It doesn't stop just at the people in our daily lives (teachers, family, friends, etc). I also believe that certain attitudes are being carried within mental health services.
    I'm not talking about all professionals but some don't really have that... understanding? If that makes sense. And it tends to show.
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