Oh is it #timetotalk? But that's already all I do.
"Conversations change lives." - at least that's what the promotional poster says.
You know what's changing my life for the worst at the moment?
Conversations with mental health professionals. - and that's what I'm about to focus on, so if you're a lovely friend or acquaintance who has reached out to me? Go you, I love you and you matter and you helped.
As many others have pointed out (and, frankly, I do not have the headspace to read all the great things folks have already pointed out, so I know I will be echoing a lot that's already being said), the problem really isn't about us talking.
It's all so easy to say "just reach out". But when you reach out and nothing happens, it's hard to keep going. I'm not going to give details of all the times I reached out and it led nowhere. It feels highly ironic that I am at a time in my life when I have reached out, and talked, the most. Yet I am in the worst place I have ever been. Because the professionals I am under the care of do not listen. Because when you say you want to die and a professional's reaction is to call a friend of yours and ask about your "self-reported suicidal thoughts" in an accusatory way (because what could suicidal thoughts be but self-reported?), it's hard to feel supported. Because when you have a disability on top of your mental illnesses and they refuse to accommodate your disability, it's hard to feel supported.
So, honestly? Fuck talking. I am through talking. I am through shouting "please help" from the roof tops. Help isn't coming and I'm slowly making my peace with it.
What I need isn't for friends and family and strangers to take the time to talk to me. Because when I'm unwell the way I am, words escape me and I often just can't talk, as much as I want to. What I need is to be seen by trained professionals who can do more than send me cakes and nice vibes and hug me - as lovely and thoughtful as these things are. What I need is treatment.
Time to talk isn't for me. I've spent a lot of time talking already.
Disclaimer and stuffs that if the campaign has helped you, great for you, if you feel that the campaign helps end stigma, good for you. Disclaimer that I'm not suggesting you stop talking, I TALK ALL THE TIME. What I'm suggesting is that talking to friends and family and strangers can't replace professional help, and professional help is bloody hard to come by. What I'm suggesting is it's hard to be in a place where talking even feels possible, when you're so low that trying to put one sentence together feels like the hardest thing.