Manchester Nightline urges students to discuss mental health issues big or small

Students struggling with mental health problems were encouraged to talk about their issues, regardless of their severity.

The plea came from Manchester Nightline who gave a talk at the Royal Northern College of Music today for World Mental Health day.

The helpline, available via phone and email from 8pm-8am, is run by students for students and offers help anyone in need at universities across Greater Manchester.

The team today delivered a presentation and talk to emphasise how simply vocalising your worries and thoughts can help you to enjoy life more.

A spokeswoman said: “When you have a problem you can feel like no one will understand you or no one is there for you but the thing is no one is going to know unless you talk about it.

“If you can find a way to talk about things, all the heavy weight can be just lifted off your chest.”

During the talk the struggles of celebrities such as Robin Williams, Stephen Fry and Catherine Zeta Jones were discussed to prove that mental health issues are capable of affecting anyone.

Often these issues can arise because people supress their worries and let them fester when just getting them out in the open be a big help.

Talking about your problems can reduce the risk of them affecting your psychological state because you feel less alone and Nightline is there for just that.

The spokeswoman added: “Sometimes when you keep things to yourself it piles up inside you and then you just feel down and depressed but if you’re keen and keep talking about it can get better”

Nightline is a non-judgemental service and is strictly confidential so however severe or mild you think your problem is they will be there to chat throughout the night if needs be.

“We get all types of calls and anyone from University of Manchester, MMU, Salford, the RNCM and any university in Greater Manchester can call us,” he said.

Other issues that people have called Nightline with in the past have been people feeling unsafe walking home and people who have just been bored and lonely and wanted a nice chat.

She added: “We really want to push Nightline and expand out to different universities to get out name out there so students know we’re there for them.”

The Nightline team is aware though that everyone is different and some students do not feel like talking about problems is for them so they have other methods to turn to.

Luke Tayler, a final year student at RNCM, said: “If not talking, write stuff down , then you have it there to read or you can just chuck it in the bin if you want to.

“It just gets it out and then you’re not thinking about it so much.”

Another student Emily Mowbray added: “I write a diary. Sometimes you can’t talk to people about problems because you don’t want to over load them.

“I also go to a councillor and I talk to her for like an hour and she’ll just listen and I find that really helpful.”

Getting their problems out into the open in one way or another is something that is helping students at the RNCM and other Manchester institutions alike.

Nightline want to raise awareness of how much lifting the weight off your shoulders could change your life so that people know there is always somewhere to go when times get tough.

For more information about the work Manchester Nightline are doing click here.

Image courtesy of Emilie Vikene, via Flickr, with thanks

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