Time to start the journey
Break up blues? Get on the road to recovery with these new workshops from ACON.
Miranda sat sipping another glass of sav blanc and wondering whether she was ever going to get better at this relationship thing. Each ending left her feeling confused, lonely, a failure. The loss felt like it triggered every other loss she’d ever experienced. She was down, and being same sex attracted just made it harder. All those negative messages from the past had a powerful way of echoing through her head making it difficult for her to feel okay about herself, never mind feeling an iota of self-love. All that lingo – of grief, trauma, ‘internalised homophobia’, depression, dependence – resonated with too much familiarity for her liking. Quality of life seemed to evade Miranda. Escape from it all was an option, if not found in the remains of this bottle, then perhaps through some permanent source.
What was this a’ la mode notion of ‘recovery’ that people were talking about in relation to mental health? Did she have a mental health ‘issue’? Was Miranda willing to take the step of recruiting some help? If she could, somehow, suppress the shame and vulnerability just long enough to start some counselling, she could begin the journey of recovery “toward a new and valued sense of identity, role and purpose”. 
Miranda had heard about ACON’s client-centred counselling that would focus on her self-identified goals. She’d heard that almost 100% of prior users of ACON’s free, daytime counselling service had stated that they would definitely recommend the service to others. She knew that ACON’s counsellors were highly skilled professionals working from a range of modalities and all placing high value on ensuring that you feel comfortable, understood and acknowledged as the individual that you are. If her day job prohibited her from attending daytime sessions, the after hours counselling program could cater for this and allow Miranda the opportunity for more in-depth work. ACON also has a female counsellor dedicated to working with people who wish to change the impact of drugs and alcohol on their lives (this includes partners and families). This could be an option for Miranda too. But was weekly counselling going to be enough?
Miranda felt like her life had got out of control and she needed some serious help with managing her current circumstances. Apparently ACON’s social work team could partner with GLBT people to support work on multiple or complex demands at play in their lives. Miranda just had to take the step of picking up the phone and referring herself. An intake and assessment discussion would help both Miranda and the service better understand the hopes and goals that she held and identify who, within the service, would be best suited to help her achieve these.
To speak to an Intake officer, please call 9206 2000 between 11a.m. and 12:30p.m. Monday to Friday. You can also do this assessment face-to-face with the Intake officer if you present at 414 Elizabeth Street, Surry Hills at 11a.m. Monday to Friday.
The next Women’s Intimacy group is due to start on the 18th July. The group provides a safe and confidential place where women from the GLBT community can explore how intimacy affects our sense of self, our relationships and our community. Over the twelve weeks, the group is co-facilitated by two highly skilled professionals whilst, at the same time, allowing for easy, free flow, explorative discussion amongst the women. Intake for the group, which takes place from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays, is open now. If you’re interested, please call 9206 2000 to secure your place. ACON accepts donations towards this service.
 (Fourth National Mental Health Plan, Priority Area 1: Social Inclusion and Recovery, Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing; Queensland Government, Acute Mental Health Unit)