Trigger warning: This is a story related to Twitter trending topic #SuicideIsNotAJokeJobert.
On January 6, radio host Jobert Sucaldito made a couple of insensitive comments about Nadine Lustre's Instagram posts, even saying: "May mga nakalagay pang caption na parang gustong tumalon. Sana tumalon na lang kung ganoon din lang naman pala." In the past, Nadine has opened up about her struggles with mental health.
Jobert issued an apology after people all over the internet called him out for it, and even local celebrities took to Twitter to reiterate that joking about suicide and mental health is not something to be tolerated. Here's what they've been saying:
"WAKE UP AND GROW UP. Suicide is not a joking matter or something to bring up passively for clout. I am stunned. How can someone be so ignorant and insensitive about this issue in this day and age?"
"Thinking of all the people I have met who silently struggle with mental health and suicidal thoughts and then hearing someone so callously turn that battle into a joke just goes to show that there is still so much work to be done. We must educate ourselves to break the stigma."
"WE NEED TO STOP JOKING ABOUT MENTAL ILLNESS."
"I wasn't going to say anything because this is a [little] triggering but hey suicide is as serious as it gets and anyone who makes a joke of it or treats it lightly should really reevaluate themselves."
"Making light of suicide and mental illness is not funny and should not be tolerated."
"Suicide is not and will never be a topic that can be tossed around loosely. Been there twice, it is not a joke. Not here to cause any trouble. Simply stating facts as a fellow human being with a pretty stable moral compass. Good night and God bless you."
"We don't joke about mental health."
"May anyone with the power to capture people's attention through their work and influence be more educated to know the difference between topics that can be joked about and topics that are not to be taken lightly. It is not about being too sensitive. It is simply about respect."
"I interviewed Nadine Lustre on ANC Headstart last year. She was brave enough to share about her period of depression and the crisis she went through. She is a smart, deep, and passionate person. Jokes about mental health aren't funny and should not be tolerated."
What hotlines can I call for help for myself or a loved one?
Here are some of the hotlines you can call if you or someone you know needs help. Please share the numbers with your loved ones as well.
- The National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) Crisis Hotline, a 24/7 confidential services hotline for psychiatric emergencies, suicidal thoughts, depression, and other issues
- (02) 989-8727
- (0917) 899-8727 (or 0917 899-USAP)
- Tawag Paglaum—Centro Bisaya, a 24/7 suicide prevention and crisis intervention hotline run out of Cebu City
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- Crisis Line by In Touch Community Services
- Landline: (02) 893-7603
- Mobile: (0917) 863-1136
- Mobile: (0908) 141-9567
- Landline: (02) 804-4673
- Mobile: (0917) 558-4673
Where can I go for psychological/mental health services or support groups?
Some places you can go for psychiatric or psychological services include:
- National Center for Mental Health (NCMH)
Offers psychiatric services and more
Address: Nueve de Pebrero Street, Barangay Mauway, Mandaluyong City
Phone: (02) 531-9001; for mental health concerns and services, call (0949) 143-6425 / (0915) 792-6889 / (0922) 241-3855 / (02) 531-9001 loc. 283.
- Philippine Mental Health Association (PMHA)
Provides psychiatric, psychological, and family care services
Address: No. 18 East Avenue, Quezon City (HQ—chapter offices located in major cities nationwide)
Phone: (02) 921-4958 / (02) 921-4959
- In Touch Community Services (Crisis Line)
Offers counseling services for adults, children and families, plus training for their Crisis Line volunteers
Address: 2/F Holy Trinity Church Offices, 48 McKinley Road, Makati City, Metro Manila
Phone: (02) 893-1893 / (0917) 863-1136
Counseling Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Mondays to Fridays / 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays
- UST Graduate School Psychotrauma Clinic
Free psychological services, including assessment, evaluation, counseling, and psychotherapy
Address: Room 104, G/F Thomas Aquinas Research Complex, University of Santo Tomas, España Boulevard, Sampaloc, Manila
- Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Department, Philippine General Hospital
Offers free psychological consultation
Address: Ward 7, 2/F Philippine General Hospital, Taft Avenue, Ermita, Manila
Phone: (02) 554-8400 local 2436 and 2440 / (02) 554-8469
- Ateneo Center for Family Ministries Foundation (CEFAM)
Offers free consultation, family and individual psycho-spiritual counseling
Address: Spiritual-Pastoral Center, Ateneo de Manila University Campus, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City
Phone: (02) 426-4289 to 92
- Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center
Offers basic consulting and teaches some psychotherapeutic techniques
Address: Sumolong Highway, Sto. Niño, Marikina City
Phone: (02) 941-6289
Consulting hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Mondays to Fridays (registration hours: 8:00 to 10:00 a.m., 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.)
- Center for Behavioral Sciences—Vicente Sotto Memorial Center
Provides consultation and treatment for different psychiatric and mood problems, sleep problems, anxiety, and substance-abuse related problems
Address: Vicente Sotto Memorial Center, B. Rodriguez Extension, Cebu City
Clinic Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Psychiatric Department, Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center (EVRMC)
Offers patient counseling and crisis intervention
Address: Magsaysay Boulevard corner Enage Street, Tacloban City, Leyte
Helpline: (0995) 521-5282
- PsychConsult, Inc.
Offers psychotherapy services and psychological evaluation, plus workshops and training
Address: Unit 227 Regalia Park Towers, 150 P Tuazon Blvd, Cubao, Quezon City
Phone: (02) 421-2469 / (02) 357 64-27 / (0917) 808-0193
Online platform for mental health consultation and treatment run by a team of licensed mental health professionals
- Mood and Anxiety Resource and Referral Center (MARRC)—Makati Medical Center
Evaluates clients with mood and anxiety concerns and recommends treatment options for them
Address: 3rd Floor Tower 1, Makati Medical Center, No. 2 Amorsolo Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City
Phone: (02) 888-8999 local 7320
Service Hours (by appointment): 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Mondays to Fridays
*Mood Harmony by Makati Medical Center Support Group for Mood Disorders
Landline: (02) 844-2941
- UGAT Foundation (Ugnayan at Tulong Para sa Maralitang Pamilya, Inc.)
Offers individual, marriage, and family counseling by appointment, formation training, and counseling training
Address: 2/F ISO Annex, Social Development Complex, Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, Quezon City
Phone: (02) 426-6001 loc. 4872-73
A few Philippine-based mental health support groups include:
- Anxiety and Depression Support Philippines
- Mental Health Hour
- Cebu (meeting every Saturday at 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Books & Brews Café)
- Manila (meeting every Saturday 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Grow Ubelt Student Center)
- Cagayan de Oro (meeting every Saturday 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Kagay-an Coffee Cartel)
- Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Philippines
- Mental Health Matters by Kylie Verzosa
- Mental Health PH
- Social Anxiety Support Philippines
- Coalescent Foundation
For a more complete list of mental health service providers, check out the list crowd-sourced by #MentalHealthPH. The directory is also available as an Android app.
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