Although Christmas is a time of celebration, we know it can be a very difficult time for many of us too. With the additional impacts of Coronavirus this year as well, we know it is going to be an especially challenging festive period.
We will be available over Christmas but with more limited availability than normal (we will get back to all voicemails and emails when we can). Our mental health helpline number is 0161 480 7393.
If you need to speak to someone urgently, or somewhere to go, below are some options we are aware of, that you could try. We have also included tips and links to resources, to help you stay as well as possible this winter.
Support from other services
Open Door Safe Haven – 0800 138 7276 – 24/7 phone line, plus opening times where you can drop in, no referral needed at 72-74 Princes Street Stockport SK1 1RJ (Christmas opening times below). During service hours you can contact direct on 0161 5499 717 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Samaritans – 116 123 – if you’re distressed or feeling suicidal. You can also email email@example.com. See website for more.
The Wellspring – 0161 477 6344 – Providing services to homeless and disadvantaged people in Stockport. Open every day throughout Christmas. Harvey Street, Stockport, SK1 1YD.
Stockport Council Coronavirus Helpline – 0161 217 6046 – Dedicated helpline for vulnerable people in Stockport. Christmas opening times as follows:
21 to 23 December, 9am – 5pm
24 December, 9am – 12pm
25 to 28 December, closed
29 to 30 December, 9am – 5pm
31 December, 9am – 3.30pm
1 January, closed
NHS – 999 / 111 – 999 for emergencies, 111 for non-emergencies.
Stockport Foodbank – 07483 115349 – Centres closed 25, 26, 28 December and 1 January. Open as usual otherwise.
Man About A Dog – 07706 115 471 – peer support based on the message that suicidal thoughts and attempts should not be hidden away or feared. Support if you are feeling suicidal or have survived a suicide attempts.
SANELine – 0300 304 7000 – national out-of-hours mental health helpline offering specialist emotional support, guidance and information. 4.30pm – 10.30pm
The Silver Line – 0808 4 70 80 90 – free helpline for people feeling isolated.
Drinkline – 0300 123 1110 – free national alcohol helpline. If you’re worried about your own or someone else’s drinking.
Carers UK – 020 7378 4999 – national organisation supporting Carers.
Tips and resources
Even if Christmas isn’t a direct part of your life, the fact it’s happening can still affect you. Many of us find we feel extra pressure during the festive season, even in a more ‘normal’ non-Coronavirus year.
Here are some tips to try and keep yourself well this Christmas:
Take care of yourself – Set your own personal boundaries, let yourself have whatever feelings come up, take time out or distract yourself if you need.
Reach out – If you’re struggling, let people know. You could reach out to us or the services listed on this page, or if you live with others who you are spending time with, try to make them aware. You could tell them what helps you get through difficult times.
Be kind to yourself – Prioritising what you need and what is best for you is okay, even if others see it differently. Think about what you need. You could talk about it to someone you trust. Be patient and gentle with yourself and try to take each day at a time.
Relationships with others – Many of us are likely to be seeing less other people than we might normally do this year. But if difficult conversations might still come up, it’s okay to change the subject or say you don’t want to talk about a topic. You could write down your feelings and share them with someone else.
Mind have a support page about Christmas and Coronavirus.
We wish everyone all the best for a peaceful festive season. Look after yourselves and each other, and let’s hope 2021 is a brighter year for us all.