Who Can I Talk To about my seasonal funk?

By Marie Gress, LMSW at MSHL

A few months ago, we talked about “the funk.” The funk has many names – seasonal affect disorder, depression, anticipatory grief, stimulus withdrawal, life stressors, and more. It can come at different times and mess with our brains in different ways, but it always feels “funky.” When these feelings overcome you, you know you are supposed to talk to someone – but who?
Start with friends or family.  They are the foundation of your support system and true friends are more than willing to be a listening ear or meet for lunch in your time of need.  If you are thinking “I don’t want to be a burden to them,” my professional advice is to stop telling yourself that.  Your funk is trying to keep you isolated.  Plus, you don’t get to decide how other people feel – so give them a try.
Maybe you don’t have a support system to talk to or perhaps your wise friends have suggested you seek additional help.  DO IT.  In a study published by the CDC, approximately 50% of those ages 50-64 have talked to a professional about the stressors in their lives.  You are certainly not alone in needing an extra person to debrief your funk with.
Did you know many counselors and therapists are covered by your insurance?  Your insurance company can tell you who they cover, if you have a co-pay, etc.  As a side note, rule of thumb is that mental health co-pays are the same or less than your primary care physician co-pay. Many professionals offer a sliding scale fee as well, so don’t let money be the thing that holds you back from a healthier you.  It’s a new year, allow the best you to grow this year and give it a try even if it is just one time. 
Still not sure who you can talk to?  Give Milan Seniors for Healthy Living a call or stop in at the office.  We don’t do counseling, but we have a resource advocacy program that helps you find someone to talk to about your funk or situation (a few downtown Milan, too).  If you are homebound, we know of a few professionals who come to your house.  Our program also helps you find solutions to other needs – chore assistance, in home care, respite, housing, access to healthy foods, and much more.
Call MSHL at 734-508-6229, visit www.milanseniors.org, or email at mshl [at] milanseniors [dot] org.

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