After relocating to Helsinki from Jyväskylä to begin a new job, Davide began suffering from anxiety and loneliness. Despite the positive feedback he received at work, Davide felt that his performance was getting worse. He felt stuck in a bubble of anxiety, without friends around to offer a helping hand. With his girlfriend’s support, he decided to seek professional help.
The company Davide worked for offered healthcare through a private provider, which included mental health support in the form of four hour-long sessions with a mental health professional. His counsellor helped him to see his problems from a different perspective.
“It was liberating,” said Davide. “It was a key factor in understanding myself more. It showed me that other people also have these emotions.”
Especially for foreigners dealing with the transitions of early adulthood, opening up is important for feeling less alone. Davide believes that the more open we are about the problems we face, the easier it will be for those who need help to feel comfortable seeking it.
Although he understands that some men may worry about being perceived as weak for asking for help, Davide believes that talking about challenging experiences is a sign of strength. “We should remember the difference between being vulnerable and being weak,” he said. “Vulnerable is not the opposite of strong. When I was the most vulnerable, I was the most strong.”
To get the most out of mental health care, Davide suggests trusting mental health professionals, brainstorming important topics before meeting with a counsellor, and bringing notes to counselling sessions to help keep the discussion on track.
If you missed our first chat with Davide, you can go back and listen here!
Mieli (Mental Health Finland) offers multilingual support for foreigners experiencing mental health challenges free of cost.