It is almost as if being a tough S.O.B is bred into us when we are born. In the eyes of millions around the world Australian's are tough! They are born into a country that is constantly hot, a country where anything that can move seems to be trying to kill you, and a country that seems to be always in drought or on fire. On television screens around the globe when it comes to Australia no matter the circumstances there is always that stubborn Australian, the one that fronts the camera's and declares they will build again, that they will rally and be back where they were no matter how devestating the current events have been.
But once the cameras stop rolling, once the local and national interest has progressed onto the next major story what becomes of those who were so resilient? Those who are figures within their community who after the fanfare has subsided are left alone, isolated as neighbours they had built bonds with aren't as resilient as they are.
Members of our community where due to the circumstances have gone from someone the community turns to, to someone that needs the community. And for many rural Australian towns the mere mention that you are not coping usually leads to a slap on the back, an invite to the pub for a beer to 'drown your sorrows' and the expectation that they will be fine. But really away from putting on the brave face, behind the fake smile, is concern. It doesn't matter how resilient one is there is only so much a person can take.
These once resilient Australians may all of a sudden start waking every morning with a 'fake' cough in an effort to get a day off work as the doubt in their heads have broken them and they no longer want to put the fake smile on just to get through the working day. Being paid the bare minimum employers can get away with paying puts additional pressure with the constant rise in living expenses, where it starts to get hard to just get dinner onto a plate. During these times relationships can be strained, and begin to crack.
Whether it be ignorance, not interpriting the signs, or self-pride despite the best efforts there remains a stigma surrounding Australians, in particular men, seeking the Mental Health support they require. It could be the inability to take time of work to see the help they require due to needing the funds to keep their household running. Friends misinterpreting someone suffering from drepression as just 'going through a rough trot', or the fear of looking weak by seeking the help needed we as the Australian society need to share the word around that it doesn't matter what you're going through it is okay to not be okay.
UpdateAustralia would like to spark discussions on how we, as a wider community, can encourage all of those who are struggling with anxiety and depression, that it is okay to seek the assistance from the charities and support agencies that have been established, and have highly trained staff, to help you through the struggles they are facing.
UpdateAustralia would like to advocate towards better education towards all Australians as to the warning signs of someone who may be suffering depression in order to give Australians an opportunity to quietly ask their 'mates' if everything is okay if key indicators of a depressional episode are displayed.