RUOK Day | Who have you asked?

I received a call this afternoon from a friend of mine. She read my post about the importance of listening, and followed the links that provided tips on how to have a conversation about someone you’re concerned with. After asking “are you okay?” she was met with an “I’m fine”. When it was pushed, it was met with aggression.

She asked me:

“What can I do? How can I get someone I care for to acknowledge something isn’t right?”

What happens when you speak to primary school kids about their mental health?

When I was asked to speak to years 5 and 6, from a local primary school about their mental health and wellbeing, I had no idea what to expect. However, what I took away from that day is something everyone needs to know.

To give some context, a few months ago I spoke to the year 10 students from a local high-school, as well as their teachers. Something I have done many times before. One of the people there that day was the assistant head of the senior preparatory school. Knowing all too well the situations of his students he knew that something like this was needed for them.

Sad taboo: Can We Talk Newcastle forum brings dark subject of mental health and suicide to the light | The Sunday Telegraph

Schwartz, now 25 and Taylor, 24, told their excruciatingly personal stories of mental ill-health at The Sunday Telegraph’s Can We Talk forum in Newcastle on Tuesday.

For both young people, the key to survival was finding the courage to tell their parents the truth about their feelings — and then trying several mental health professionals until they found one who ‘clicked’.

RUOK Day | It’s more than just asking a question

Every now and then I ask my friends from overseas what they’ve learnt from the ‘eloquently rich and diverse’ Australian language since they arrived.

Generally, there are the uniquely Aussie (this is one of the words!) phrases such as bogandrop bearsand Maccas. We also try to shorten as many words as possible by adding an ‘o’ or ‘ies’ to the end; arvo, servo, vego, sunnies, boardies, mozzies, etc. A mate can be a best friend or a complete stranger, and of course the most valuable lesson is realising that thongs are something you wear on your feet.