Perspective in your family law matter
Posted: 22nd February 2017
Posted by: Luke Brandon, Partner
Recent news of Grant Hackett and Dan Vickerman put back in the fore the issue of mental health.
Both huge men in stature and sporting achievements, but both with inner demons. It of course not only affects the individual but their families. It’s reported that Hackett’s family is divided over the recent media exposure and Vickerman leaving behind a wife and two children not to mention other family and friends.
I was reading an article on the Sydney Morning Herald webpage by a journalist who has himself struggled with depression over his lifetime. He says that when he hears of the tragedy of Vickerman, it makes him feel “privileged” that he found a way out of that “box”.
For blokes, they say it is simply being able to talk about their feelings which can be the difference. It appears so hard for males to be able to talk about how they feel or put their hand up to say that they are struggling.
There is a bit of momentum building at the moment behind a state of mind and being known as “mindfulness”. It is in fact big amongst some family lawyers. It is a new brand for what I call “perspective”. The old adage, “the glass is half full rather than half empty”. I read an article by a female life coach about how she puts her husband before her children. Whilst I don’t necessarily agree with what she was pushing in that article, her mantra in life and what she imparts upon her clients is that of “gratefulness”. Instead of thinking about what you don’t have, be grateful for all the things you do have. It’s the same thing though… it’s perspective.
Everything in life is how you approach it. Go to any motivational speaker… fundamentally they are preaching perspective.
I was watching The Project last night and there was a story on a young teenage boy by the name of Bryce who suffered his entire life with a rare genetic disorder known as Kabuki Syndrome. His health took a turn for the worse and doctors gave him just weeks to live. Bryce didn’t get upset rather asked his parents if he could have a final party and invite the Geelong Football team and the Judges from MasterChef. The sport stars and chefs obliged and Bryce had a wonderful time. There was a clip of George Calombaris where he said in effect that seeing Bryce makes him thankful that his lot were blessed with good health and he should focus on that rather than on the trivial things the kids might do which upset him.
The same applies when you’re going through a relationship/marriage breakdown. It can feel as though your life has come to an end. That you have lost everything. That you can’t see any light at the end of the tunnel. That the years invested in your relationship/marriage have been for nothing. That you’ve lost your kids. That you’ve lost your home.
If you are struggling you should reach out for help. You could see your GP and get a mental health plan referral so that you can get some government funded/assisted counselling. Don’t feel as though you can’t reach out for such help because it will reveal you as less of a person or less of a parent. It will not and in fact the reverse is true.
Having helped many clients through their relationship breakdown and keeping in touch with them years down the track, I can tell you that life does go on, there is light at the end of the tunnel – I recall one reporting it was merely a “blip” on life’s radar in circumstances where at the time, the problems and challenges seemed insurmountable.