Getting help in a crisis - Problems involved
What if I have problems getting help?
Getting help can sometimes be difficult. It is important to keep trying if you had problems the first time. You may find that you need to try different services before getting the right support for your relative. This can especially be the case if they don’t want to get help.
You could put your concerns in writing, and send these to professionals as well as sharing them in person or over the phone. This can make it easier for professionals to understand your concerns It also gives you a record of what you have said and when. You could send the concerns in a letter or email. Sometimes it can be helpful to send copies to other professionals too. For example, if you send a letter to the community mental health team, you could send a copy to your relative’s GP too.
Try to include clear and specific examples of the concerns you have. You could tell them about thoughts or behaviour that you are worried about. If there is any risk to the person themselves or to other people then make this clear.
If you are still finding it difficult to get help, or you are not happy with the help you have got, you can make a formal complaint. All GP surgeries, hospitals and mental health services have a complaints procedure.
If you share concerns about your relative, professionals may tell your relative that you did this. This can affect relationships and trust. When sharing your concerns verbally or in writing, try asking for any information you share to be kept confidential and used as sensitively as possible. You could explain that this is necessary to protect your relationship.
Sometimes, you may have information that professional services will not have. For example, if your relative will not share how they are feeling with mental health services. If this is the case, you could highlight that there is a risk that your relative would stop talking to you if your information is not used as sensitively as possible.
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