One of my son’s good friends – let’s call him M – has just been diagnosed with chronic fatigue – not what you want when you’re about to start your first year of university! According to his dad, who I ran into at the chemist today, it seems to be a spin-off of the glandular fever the poor kid had last year, which was why he’d deferred starting university until mid-year. Talk about one thing after another!

On the positive side, it sounds like M has been getting some quality support in the form of sessions with a dietician at a psychological health clinic on the Mornington Peninsula. Apparently, dietetics is an allied health profession that can be really helpful in supporting wellbeing when it comes to conditions of this nature – makes sense, although I’ve never given it much thought.  

In addition, M has been having some psychological counselling to deal with the depression he was experiencing while sitting his year 12 exams last year. I vaguely recall my son saying that one of his mate’s had been referred to a psychiatrist around that time; maybe that was M. I don’t like to pry too much into the kids’ private lives, and especially those of their friends, so I hadn’t pressed for information. I’m sure plenty of kids these days see mental health professionals, anyway.

My brother had a referral to a psychiatrist a couple of years back, didn’t he? I’d forgotten about that. I don’t think I ever found out if he’d followed up on it. Does that make me an uncaring person? Or just one who’s very respectful of other people’s privacy? Either way, the Mornington psychiatry and allied health scene seems to be something that quite a lot of people I know have had some involvement with.

Maybe people should be more open about it. Or should I be more open in encouraging people to open up about their experiences when they mention it? Or perhaps there’s just the right level of openness going on as the situation stands. I don’t know.

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