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Mental Health Emergency Response Line (MHERL)

Lifeline: 13 11 14
Mensline: 1300 789 978
beyondblue: 1300 224 626
Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800
Rurallink: 1800 522 002

Plan for when things don’t go well

If you are worried about your mental health or have previously experienced problems it can be helpful to write a plan that includes your wishes for care, support and recovery. This plan will be helpful when you might feel unable to make decisions, out-of-control and others such as your friends, family and professionals might need to take responsibility for your care.1 2

Planning together

Making a plan with the person who will support you when things don’t go well might be helpful. Even if you don’t make the plan together, it is important to share the plan with people you trust who may support you through the difficult times.1 2

Things to include in the plan

The following are things to consider in the plan:

  • notes on how you feel when you are feeling well (e.g. calm, happy, quiet, cheerful, shy)
  • notes on how others can recognise when you need their support (e.g. agitated, avoiding people, unable to get out of bed, neglecting personal hygiene or house work)
  • who you want to be contacted when you need support (e.g. friend, family member, your GP, or other mental health support service)
  • contact details of your GP or other mental health professionals 
  • health insurance and/or medicare details
  • whether you are happy for family or friends to be involved in your care plan
  • information about any medicine you are taking or current treatment
  • acceptable and unacceptable care and hospital options
  • things others can do to help you (e.g. listening, childcare, paying bills, taking you to the GP)
  • things others do that are not helpful (e.g. ignoring you, getting angry)
  • notes on how others can recognise when you no longer need this plan (e.g. return to work, cooking, sleeping through the night).