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Tragically Bronson is not the first site member of ours to have passed away over the 25 years the forum has been active, and unfortunately he wont be the last, but the news this weekend seems to have affected a lot of us deeply as we have known him a long time even if we all had different degrees of closeness to him. I have been thinking about things a lot since I heard about this and would like there to be something positive to come from his passing. The Bronson Legacy referred to in the title of this post if you will. 

I do not know what fits, how best to phrase it, or even if we are able to do something lasting and beneficial on the site but FFS we need to look out for each other somehow .... 

I have seen comments on Facebook and elsewhere where members of our site have posted the offer to be there for others who might need to talk. I also hold my hands out and say the same thing to anyone on this site whether we know each other or not and whether we have crossed swords or are best of buddies. If you need to talk, I am here. If you need to vent, I am here. If you need a second, third or fourth opinion, I am here. I am no expert or psychologist, but I can do two things quite well ... listen and give an opinion.  

Many of us are the 'strong silent type' and that stoic Highland reserve is how I used to deal with things as well. It's a man thing, it's a Highland thing, and it's most definitely a Highland Man thing. Over the last two years my personal life has been less than perfect. 2018 started (on Jan 1st) with the suicide of someone I knew from the Toronto FC supporters group who didn't realise how much he was loved and revered (and still is). After watching an uncle die from Prostate Cancer, I was then diagnosed and treated for cancer myself and will live with some side effects forever but the crucial thing is that I will live. I also lost my mum in June 2019, two days after returning to Canada from our last visit to see her. Through it all I had the support of friends on both sides of the Atlantic, family and colleagues and this helped. I was in a dark place a few times but someone was always there with encouragement or a quick word. Its amazing how even asking how someone is doing can be uplifting and bring you out of that slump. It also helped me shed that stoic reserved approach. I now view life as too short and bottling stuff up is less of an issue now. 

I now participate in Movember each year and one of the key cornerstones of this is mental health (along with Prostate and Testicular cancers). I have talked openly about my cancer and told colleagues at work that if anyone is scared to go for testing or wants to know what happens after a diagnosis, I am here. The same applies for trying to remove the stigma over talking about mental health.  I have added the MikeysLine link to our site pages over the weekend and there are a couple of other links below to sites that may help or form the basis of some small thing we can do for our little community here .... because thats what we are, a community, and community means looking out for each other even if/when we dont always get along. 

Please use this thread for comments, links or brainstorming anything you think we can do here. 

 

https://uk.movember.com/mens-health/we-need-to-ask

https://letstalk.bell.ca/en/ways-to-help

 

 

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Hits home on many levels Scotty so thank you. I've not been brave enough to seek help when needed or open up about it like you have, it's a lesson so many of us need to learn. I get the Highland Man stoic thing - I find it very easy to reach out to help others but have found it incredibly hard to seek that same help for myself or talk about any issues I've had. I hope those that need to can take the opportunity to find that help and support when needed. I also do the Movember thing and take part in the Distinguished Gentleman's Ride...

https://www.gentlemansride.com

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Something done at last about this curse would be a very fitting tribute and perhaps something positive to emerge from this tragedy. We are brought together my a love of football and of ICT in particular but this puts the trivial nature of sport and the various, spats, niggles and emnities we have with our fellow posters into stark perspective.

Mea Culpa as much as anyone. I have always been a good and willing listener to the concerns of others but, and I think that being a middle aged man brought up in a stupidly stoically Highland tradition has been a large factor, I have always had a tendency to bottle up and cover up my own worries when sharing them, or at least discussing them, would have been better for myself, my family and colleagues both present and past.

If by being more open and honest about ourselves and offering the help and experience that we are able to give to others can prevent another such tragedy then some good will come of this and I too am very happy to make myself available to listen to anyone at any time.

I have been as guilty as any but perhaps, whilst still having robust discussion and disagreement, we can start being a little more respectful and tolerant of one another not just on this site, not just on social media but in general.

 

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Without wanting to say too much in the past I have found Breathing Space a really helpful service and a friend also used them and benefitted from speaking to them. Information can be found at:

https://breathingspace.scot/

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50 minutes ago, RiG said:

Without wanting to say too much in the past I have found Breathing Space a really helpful service and a friend also used them and benefitted from speaking to them. Information can be found at:

https://breathingspace.scot/

Breathing space is an excellent resource and is recommended by health care professionals  

Highly recommend. 

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Well it is part and parcel of my job and has been for 45 years. Taking calls two nights a week at the moment. BUT calling a NHS run Mental Health "Crisis" Line is not the whole answer unless you are in Mental Health Services, have a recognised diagnosis and the "Risk" level is deemed "High". I am mainly sought to action Section 136 presentations or MHA Assessments. Of course that is usually urgent and needed. But it is often life events, loss and potential loss that eats away - leading to guilt, hopelessness, worthlessness and helplessness - and often when we "bottle" it up another kind of bottle is a coping mechanism. Many people who call want to maintain strict confidentiality and often anonimity, many are still put off by the stigma and most just want to talk and be consoled. Primary Care Mental Health has been overloaded and waiting lists are "ridiculous". I have heard good and bad feedback from the large number of helplines available. Over the years I have found that it is usually the ones who have perfected the "cover" or act impulsively, that often choose the suicide route. I bet that word made people shiver. Should I have used it ? To me the only way to ask about "suicide risk" is to be direct and blunt. Not at all easy but I would say - Ask the question. Well I am now off to an assessment. A young 19 year old who made a serious attempt at the weekend. The aim will be to establish the risk and to try and establish the precipitators. But as Gringo succinctly pointed out - Tell someone - In fact identify somebody close to you NOW and get them to be your "buddy" and make an agreement to act when necessary. 

As the tears begin to fall again - I wished that you had called out mate - there were so many who would have answered the call.

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There are many avenues people can seek help from and I'd say talking to friends and family is very high on that list. Another charity that is closely aimed at helping people is https://www.thecalmzone.net/ 

It's called CALM [Campaign Against Living Miserably] If anyone on here listens to Planet Rock Radio will be aware of the monies their DJ Wyatt has raised for this cause with his cycling exploits. He was actually in Inverness towards the end of last year. It's not just those with that Highland Man stoic thing, it can happen to all, even hard faced rockers and hairy ersed bikers. Help is there - we just have to ask.

As I mentioned in a earlier post, Bronson was the saviour and founder member of the Highland March. With this in mind the Highland Marchers from those years plan to get as many of us together and hit the roads, hills and river crossings again. 

 

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It's true we need to look after and out for each other. Within my organisation (ambulance service ) we use the r u ok? Campaign. It's simple but effective. If you feel or see someone is not right for whatever reason use the r u ok? Question. A lot of people don't want to or feel they are unable to ask for help and by offering that far to listen or hand to guide then you are taking the burden off them. One simple question can change and save a life. If you find someone is in distress then there are a multitude of organisations there to help. As a health care professional we sign post to Samaritans, breathing space and the person own gp. The help is there we as a group of similarly minded people just need to make sure those in need find it.

Maybe as a legacy we could get the club along with one of the charities to hold a course for interested fans on how to deal with mental health crisis to help identify someone in need and to give them the confidence and skills to help that person through their dark moments just a suggestion.

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5 hours ago, Gringo said:

There are many avenues people can seek help from and I'd say talking to friends and family is very high on that list. Another charity that is closely aimed at helping people is https://www.thecalmzone.net/ 

It's called CALM [Campaign Against Living Miserably] If anyone on here listens to Planet Rock Radio will be aware of the monies their DJ Wyatt has raised for this cause with his cycling exploits. He was actually in Inverness towards the end of last year. It's not just those with that Highland Man stoic thing, it can happen to all, even hard faced rockers and hairy ersed bikers. Help is there - we just have to ask.

As I mentioned in a earlier post, Bronson was the saviour and founder member of the Highland March. With this in mind the Highland Marchers from those years plan to get as many of us together and hit the roads, hills and river crossings again. 

 

What a very good suggestion. I am sure that a very suitable charity will benefit considerably from the members of this site alone.

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