Caring for a loved one with a mental illness can be daunting.
The stigma attached to having a family member with a mental illness can also be isolating. It’s the reason Kathryn Newsom, RN at Eden Health Care Services, is starting a new support group.
“I like to think of it as an illness like any other one, we just don’t talk about it as often,” she says. “This is taking the next step… come talk about it, you might find your experiences are more common than you realize.”
She notes supporting someone with mental illness over time can become draining, ” and you don’t always know how to take care of yourself.”
Newsom envisions the group as a safe place to share and also learn strategies to take better care of yourself as the caregiver.
With no other support groups like it in the Pembina Valley, it may also save many a trip to Winnipeg.
“I’m opening it up for anybody in our region who would find it a shorter trip to Winkler than Winnipeg,” she says. “Wherever they come from they are welcome.”
The group will meet the third Thursday of every month from 7:00 p.m to 9:00 p.m at Eden Mental Health Centre’s Evergreen building at 1500 Pembina Avenue in Winkler.
The first meeting will be held January 19. There is no fee and caregivers for individuals of all types of mental illnesses are welcome.
For more information call 204-325-4325.