New Year’s Eve has arrived, and with it comes the 4 ‘R’s:Reflection,Renewal,Resolutions and Refreshments. Lots of Refreshments.
This is how ‘normal’ people observe New Year’s Eve isn’t it? Sitting in their comfortable homes, surrounded by the people they love, stuffing canapes and champagne down their necks and jokingly berating themselves, for signing up to the local gym last January and giving up after 6 weeks. The New Year’s Eve watchword for them is “New Year, New Me.”
Jools Holland finishes his last jazz piano number of the year, to allow Big Ben to take centre stage. Glasses are refilled, and the air is heavy with a mixture of anticipation and emotion. Finally Big Ben chimes his funereal countdown. At the last 5 strokes, everyone in the room begins chanting in unison. 5…4…3….2….1! Happy New Year! The scream. The sound is accompanied by ching chinging of glasses, and maybe even a marriage proposal.
On the TV screen, fireworks burst out in glorious Technicolor, and an upbeat dance track booms out; its lyrics informing us that the world is our oyster and we can achieve all our dreams in this new year.
Then comes Auld Lang Syne. We hold hands, and sing about old acquaintances not being forgot and left behind, while simultaneously forgetting them.
The Other 4 ‘R’s of New Year’s Eve
But what if this isn’t a description of your New Year’s Eve? What if you’re one of the many people out there who can’t face New Year’s Eve, and everything that comes with it?
What if your New Year’s Eve consists of a modest dinner, with a glass of something strong to help you sleep through next door’s fireworks, followed by an early night? What if the sound of Big Ben’s chimes induces feelings of horror and dread in the pit of your stomach? What if even the sight of Jools Holland tinkling his ivories on national TV doesn’t tempt you away from your bed?
What if you simply can’t bear the thought of having to go through another year of financial struggle, loss, rejection and depression?
What if you’ve lost someone you love this year, and you’re wrestling with the guilt at moving into a new year without them?
What if your New Year’s Eve 4 ‘R’s are Regret, Reclusive, Restless and Run Down? Well, you’ve come to the right place.
My recommended New Year’s Eve ‘R’ is to Reach Out. I’ve taken the liberty of listing some helplines below, which will all be manned tonight by people who make it their business to care.
Even if you have to dial that number from your bed, do it. I can’t guarantee that the phone call will change your life, but I can say that it’ll be the best thing you’ll have done this year.
Please don’t suffer in silence. Pick up the phone and speak to someone – anyone.
Helpline in the UK (taken from the NHS Choices website)
Confidential support for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair.
Phone: 116 123 (free 24-hour helpline)
Young suicide prevention society.
Phone: HOPElineUK 0800 068 4141 (Mon-Fri,10am-5pm & 7pm-10pm. Weekends 2pm-5pm)
Advice on dealing with domestic violence.
Phone: 0808 2000 247 (24-hour helpline)
Phone: 0845 769 7555 (24-hour helpline)
Phone: 0300 999 1212 (daily until midnight)
Cruse Bereavement Care
Phone: 0844 477 9400 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)
Phone: 0808 802 9999 (daily, 12pm-2.30pm, 7pm-9.30pm)
Phone: 0845 30 30 900 (Mon-Fri, 9am-8pm. Weekends, 9am-7pm)
Phone: 0845 634 1414 (Mon-Thurs, 1.30pm-4.30pm)
OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) Action
Support for people with obsessive compulsive disorder. Includes information on treatment and online resources.
Phone: 0845 390 6232 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5pm)
A charity run by people with OCD, for people with OCD. Includes facts, news and treatments.
Phone: 0845 120 3778 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)
Voluntary charity offering support for sufferers of panic attacks and OCD. Offers a course to help overcome your phobia/OCD. Includes a helpline.
Phone: 0844 967 4848 (daily, 10am-10pm)
Charity providing support if you’ve been diagnosed with an anxiety condition.
Phone: 08444 775 774 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5.30pm)
Helplines in the US (taken from the Healthy Place website)