No one is left behind, everyone needs help

Moving into a home of your own may sound tempting and exciting. You may even need solitude if you want to take a breath and clear your thoughts. However, you should bear in mind and be prepared for the fact that becoming independent has its downsides as well. Sometimes empty walls and the lack of familiar noises can make you feel uneasy and lonely, and you may even become homesick.

It is good to be aware of the fact that everyone is sure to have these feelings at first before getting used to independent life. However, excessive solitude and the loneliness caused by it can be detrimental. It can cause effects such as isolation, lack of energy, despair, low self-esteem, social difficulties and a decrease in physical health.

Having a safety net is important in preventing loneliness. The safety net consists of people who can help you in a time of need. Your family, relatives, neighbours, authorities, friends and acquaintances can be a part of the safety net. It is important for everyone that there is at least one safe person in their safety net. You should introduce yourself to your neighbours so you can ask them for help when you need it. The sooner you ask for help, the better you will usually manage. But it is never too late to start preventing loneliness.

Being active is key. It is good to get moving and meet new people. The next step is to start interacting with new people. Operational groups (such as exercise groups) or conversation groups can be a good option in the beginning. You should utilise your strengths. Try asking someone you have just met: “Would you like to have a coffee / go see a movie / go for a picnic with me?”

Phone numbers for those who need help

Kriisipuhelin (national crisis helpline) +358 (0)10 195 202

Conversational help in crisis situations, Mon‒Fri from 9am to 7am, Sat‒Sun + holidays from 3pm to 7am.

SOS Crisis Centre (in English) +358 (0)9 4135 0501  (for appointments)

Open on Mon‒Thu 9‒12 and 13‒15, on Fri 9‒12

More information about The Finnish Association for Mental Health: 

Ensi- ja turvakodit (Mother and child homes and shelters)
Town-specific contact information:

Nuorten turvatalot (Emergency youth shelters)
There are Emergency Youth Shelters in Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa, Turku and Tampere.
For contact information, see: 

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