Though not immediately considered a mental health issue, financial stress can be a huge emotional and psychological burden. Financial issues can arise over time after having a child, losing a job, or experiencing another life change but might also be brought on suddenly by environmental devastation, a changing economy, or serious health problems. When something happens to threaten your savings or deplete your resources altogether, you may feel as if your mental well-being is the least of your priorities, but it’s important not to neglect your psychological health.
Financial devastation can tear apart relationships and even threaten custody of children. As a result of losing their income, people might begin to over- or undereat, lose sleep, abuse drugs or alcohol, or experience a range of mental health concerns. Depending on the type of devastation that caused the financial loss, a person might experience grief, anxiety, posttraumatic stress, panic, depression, and more.
Good psychotherapy can help address the serious impact financial concerns can have on well-being–that is, if it is financially possible to pursue therapy. Though there is no replacement for quality mental health care with a professional, cost is a barrier to some families. The following websites and organizations, deemed exceptional by GoodTherapy.org, may offer you some support and guidance.
- 2-1-1: This free, confidential hotline helps connect people in crisis to the resources they need. It is available in the US and Canada via phone, text, or web. 2-1-1 offers information about disaster relief, addiction treatment, re-entry into the workforce, housing assistance, nutrition programs, and more.
- Take Charge America: This 501(c)3 nonprofit offers financial education. Visitors to this website can find information about help with debt or student loan support, review housing help resources, seek lender support, and more. A digital library offers articles on numerous topics related to financial concerns and debt, financial calculators, teaching resources, and blog articles.
- About Unemployment: This website, an educational resource providing information on unemployment benefits, offers information about each state’s eligibility standards and appeals process. Visitors can learn whether they qualify, access information about the appeals process, find an office in their area, and learn more about other available assistance. The site also provides a list of agencies that give financial aid. The site is not associated with any government organization and is meant to provide information only.
- National Employment Law Project: NELP advocates for people experiencing unemployment or low-wage employment. The organization, which works to inspire change systemically, campaigns for safe workplaces, ethical job creation, and financial reform. NELP publishes relevant research and fact sheets on its digital platform, and visitors to the website can access related resources and information about NELP campaigns.
- Volunteers of America: A faith-based nonprofit organization, VOA has been helping people in crisis since 1896. Visitors to the website can read information about the organization and the services they provide and find nearby VOA services, such as low-income housing, senior care, and residential communities for people with mental health.
- National Health Care for the Homeless Council: NHCHC, a network of medical professionals, social workers, and advocates working to ensure health care and housing for everyone, publishes research online about homelessness, mental health, advocacy, and medicine. This organization does not provide direct services to people experiencing homelessness or other concerns, but visitors to the website can also access free online courses and webinars to learn how to provide better care, seek resources and assistance to fulfill this goal, and find support for becoming involved. The site does offer a directory for people experiencing homelessness to find services near them.
- National Coalition for the Homeless: The NCH, an organization made up people who have or are experiencing homelessness, along with activists and service providers, is dedicated to ending homelessness. Its website offers extensive resources and information on related issues such as housing and emotional trauma. There are also research reports, shelter directories, and an archive of recommended media. Visitors to the website can learn how to get help if they are homeless, not yet homeless, or may become homeless in a short period of time.
- Money and Mental Health Policy Institute: Approximately half of all adults experiencing problem debt also experience a mental health concerns. This UK-based charity aims to change this statistic by promoting financial stability among people with mental health concerns through research and the development of policy solutions. Visitors to the website can access information on the intersection between money and mental health through research insights, policy reports, and a blog. People in need of help can find crisis and support numbers, links to other resources, and forms and guides for communicating with creditors and health care professionals.
- Here to Help: This coalition of nonprofit agencies in Canada operates with the goal of helping people experiencing mental conditions and substance abuse live well and manage these challenges through greater mental health literacy. The website offers self-help resources for housing and employment and also provides informational support for topics such as income, schooling, education, and mental health topics, including stigma and discrimination. Here to Help also has a section where visitors can share their personal stories and ask anonymous questions about finding help or receiving mental health and general wellness support.
- American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. (n.d.). Financial distress and the family. Retrieved from http://www.therapistlocator.net/iMIS15/AAMFT/Content/Consumer_Updates/Financial_Distress.aspx
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