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The Penwortham man encouraging others to open up about their mental health

Posted on - 26th March, 2022 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Health, Penwortham, People, Preston News, Proud Preston, South Ribble News
Paul Fletcher
The death of Alex’s uncle Paul was the catalyst for him helping others

A Penwortham man who suffers from stress and anxiety is reaching out to others to let them know that they are not alone.  

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Alex Fletcher is making it his mission to connect people who feel stressed, anxious or depressed via his Facebook group Let’s Talk.

In the group he posts messages of comfort and friendship, and videos where he talks openly about his own battle with anxiety and the impact that it can have on a person’s life and wellbeing. 

Posts from other group members are encouraged, all of which are checked for suitability and adherence to the group rules before being added. This also enables members to request that their post be added anonymously; an option that allows those less confident in sharing their personal stories the chance to be open about their struggles.

As well as fighting his own battle with poor mental health, Alex experienced the devastation that reverberates through friends and family when a loved one takes their own life when his uncle Paul was found dead in Hill Road Cemetery. 

Read more: ‘He was a true gent’: Friends raise a glass to popular Penwortham man who died this week

Alex said: “He was a role model to me and was always making sure that everyone around him was doing alright. He was the groundskeeper for Penwortham’s Garden of Remembrance, and he would always find the time to talk with and comfort those who had lost someone dear to them.

“We knew that there were times when he was depressed, but we didn’t know just how much he was suffering.”

Alex explained that the unexpected death of his uncle was the catalyst that convinced him to do something to help others who might be feeling isolated and unable to reach out for support, but he wasn’t sure how best to go about it. 

Alex Fletcher
Alex has started Let’s Talk

When he started his Let’s Talk group and shared the link with local Facebook pages, he was encouraged at how many people joined in the first few weeks. 

Since then the community has grown steadily in size, with group members both sharing their stories and worries and acknowledging those of others. 

Alex stresses that the group is for expressing emotions and recounting experiences for which others can offer friendly support, but cannot offer treatment or medical advice.

Alex’s Facebook group welcomes anyone who wishes to join, and can be found at:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/theletstalkgroup/?ref=share

For mental health help from trained individuals, contact:

  • Your GP if they are open
  • 111
  • Samaritans – 116 123 (24/7)
  • National Suicide Hotline – 0800 689 5652
  • Shout Texting Service – 85258 (24/7)
  • CALM – 0800 58 58 58 – (5pm – 12am)
  • SOS – 03001020505 (4pm – 12am)

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