Helplines are an incredibly useful service where trained volunteers and/or counsellors extend support for people experiencing distress. They are the go-to recommendation for most of us when we want to direct someone towards a mental health service.
However, unfavorable experiences with helplines are common – often due to systemic factors that we may or may not be fully aware of. Limitations in available resources, accessibility, intersectional mental health knowledge/training, and logistical difficulties are few of the many factors that we must consider in understanding the workings of helplines and the role they can play in someone’s support system.
Before we recommend a helpline to a loved one, here are some things we may want to keep in mind! 🙌