Feeling Down In California? Call 1-855-845-7415

Any time of the year can be tough for some people, but during the holidays, feelings of depression and isolation can really spike.

Thanksgiving and Christmas have a reputation for stirring up family shit, and New Years brings with it a whole new set of expectations and regrets. Mental illness does not discriminate, and if you’re feeling emotionally unstable right now, you should never feel too ashamed to pick up the phone and ask for help. And as of Monday, Californians have a reliable number to call: 1-855-845-7415.

Thanks to a state budget allocation of $10.8 million over three years, California has launched its first statewide mental health line to provide non-emergency emotional support for those struggling with their mental and emotional well-being. The California Peer-Run Warm Line will be staffed by counsellors Monday through Friday from 7 am until 11 pm, Saturdays from 7 am until 3 pm, and Sundays from 7 am until 9 pm, and by the end of the year, the call centre is expected to be open 24/7. If you’d rather online chat, you can do so at mentalhealthsf.org.

The reasoning behind its ‘warm line’ title, is that staff aim to arrange help before the situation escalates to a ‘hotline’ level, preventing the need for crisis-based interventions like hospital stays—which can be notoriously expensive in the land of the no free healthcare. Anyway, if you don’t feel like yourself and just need someone to talk to, know that there is someone willing to lend an ear. 1-855-845-7415. Call it. Save it in your phone. Send it to a friend or family member who you think might need it. It can get rough out there; help each other out.

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