This World Mental Health Day (Tuesday 10 October), it is important to know how to reach out to others and know how they can help improve your mental well being.
For many people with epilepsy, reaching out to others may seem a daunting task and one that involves being vulnerable around other people. However, reaching out can help you deal with the mental aspects of living with epilepsy – such as the stress caused by experiencing seizures.
One person who knows this bumpy but worthwhile journey is one of our supporters Mo: “I have a lovely partner now, who understands my epilepsy. But when we first got together, I got really stressed about having one of my turns and wetting myself. Of course, the more stressed I got, the more seizures I had. Thank goodness, she understands and is still here for me.”
Epilepsy Action offers several services to make the process of reaching out and connecting with others easier for people with epilepsy:
- Befriending – This service matches you with a friendly volunteer who, via regular online/phone chats, can be a listening ear to talk to over a three-month period
- Talk and Support groups – You can join a group in your area where you can meet others who are also affected by epilepsy. These groups are a great place to share experiences and gain advice as well as support from others who share your condition
- Virtual Talk and Support groups – If a local group doesn’t appeal, join an online group where you can meet people who have similar experiences of epilepsy. This includes groups designed for men and our groups designed for parents of children who have epilepsy
- Regional counselling for Wales and Northern Ireland – We provide eight weeks of free counselling online or over the phone and online emotional support programmes in a group setting.
Check out this video from Derrick, who shares his experiences of living with epilepsy and how it has affected his mental health. If you’d like to reach out to us with your experiences of epilepsy, tag us on social media. If you need more direct support contact our helpline here: The Epilepsy Action helpline – Epilepsy Action