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  • Writer's pictureThe Original Folks

Ep 22: Why do YOUths not seek help? with Bettina Yeap

Hosts: Jade and Deniece

Guest: Bettina


In this episode, Jade and Deniece feature Bettina, for the second part of the episode "Why youths don't seek help" as relates to mental health challenges. Bettina is a counselor and she offers some unique insights into the discussion as well as ways to surmount the challenges.



Episode Timeline:

[00:18] Today's topic is a follow-up to the previous conversation on "Why youths don't seek help" featuring a guest "Bettina".

[00:40] Bettina is a counselor with over a decade of experience, currently working in a mental health department. "I believe my clients are the experts of their lives" Counselling mostly involves listening to clients and helping them understand perspectives to make better decisions. Counseling is interesting because every client that comes in is different, even when it is the same issue as another client. Bettina shares that growing up she always knew she wanted to work with people.

[05:27] How different do you think youth issues are today, compared with 20 years ago? The first major difference is the internet, with a major example being online bullying. In addition to the exposure online, the vast amount of information and ideas online may contribute to the pressure youths experience. The picture-perfect scenario also created by social media gives the wrong impression to youths and adds to the pressure they experience in trying to fit in. Peer pressure is no longer only in the classroom but also online. Deniece adds that counselors nowadays need to be trained on how to help youths manage social media pressure.

[14:00] If parents are open about the issues they are facing, it may be a connecting point with youths. Bettina shares that getting the child's perspective is as important as getting the parent's perspective when a child is having mental health issues. This is because if the parent is not coordinated enough to manage their own emotions, they would not be able to manage the child's emotions either.

[23:21] Do you think things will change with new generation parents and their children? With more exposure to information from the internet, parents are learning about mental health and understanding better how to handle their children emotionally. Although mindsets take longer to change and so this will probably still take some time.

[28:57] Apart from the stigma surrounding mental health, there is also the stigma around seeking help. It takes a lot of courage to recognize that you have a problem, so you can focus on fixing it. It helps to take the necessary steps as early as possible so these mental health problems do not escalate.

[32:58] Bettina shares that she sees more women coming forward to seek help compared to men. This is not surprising because men don't often talk about their feelings.

[37:57] Talking about boundaries: One of the strategies Bettina applies with her clients is helping them set their boundaries because having these boundaries helps them take care of themselves and then take care of the kids. In addition, parents serve as models for the kids and so their behavior needs to be consciously controlled too.

[42:22] About President Halimah's Facebook post on mental health: One of the issues affecting the openness of kids who need help in mental health is the stigma associated with it, and if parents must always be involved, there is the question of if they can handle it, or if the kids even trust them enough to get them involved. Even though the event was tragic, it serves as a wake-up call. What can we learn as a society, and what are the roles we can each play in our different fields to help people with mental health challenges?

[51:00] Destigmatizing mental health is a journey: it will take time and effort from everyone.

[52:35] Our hosts remind listeners about the collaborative playlist "Love your mind" on Spotify to help people feel better, and people are encouraged to feel free to add their preferred soothing tracks they want others to listen to.

[54:34] Tikitok is running a mental wellness campaign for the next 8 weeks, listeners are encouraged to create more mental health-related content.

[55:02] How to contact Bettina - Instagram @insightccs. There are mental health screening questionnaires on the Instagram page, and an opportunity to talk with a counselor for those feeling down or depressed.

Keep up with us on socials!


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