There was a big reaction to the Young and Troubled documentary on RTÉ last night
It made for an often tough but very important watch.
All of this week, RTÉ have been shining a light on the issue of mental health in Ireland, particularly amongst young people in this country.
The issue has been highlighted in a number of ways by the state broadcaster in recent days, from a 60-foot artwork by renowned artist Joe Caslin spanning three storeys of the RTÉ building in Montrose (see above) to a specially curated 2fm Spotify playlist and a GAA panel discussion on mental health and wellbeing hosted by Evanne Ní Chuilinn.
The series culminated on Thursday night with the documentary, Young and Troubled, which sought to highlight the reality of mental health issues among Ireland's young population and the crises in the country’s mental health services.
Amongst those to feature in the programme were Fiona and Tim Tuomey, who believe that the system in Ireland failed their daughter Millie, who died by suicide at the age of 11.
Milly Tuomey died by suicide when she was just 11 years old. Her parents, Fiona and Tim, believe she was failed by the system that was supposed to help them.
The Big Picture - Young and Troubled
RTÉ One - Tonight - 9.35pm#RTEBigPic #YouthMentalHealth pic.twitter.com/XyyVzZP7Fm
— RTÉ One (@RTEOne) April 26, 2018
The documentary looked at the services provided by Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and the long waits endured by parents wishing to avail of their services and featured contributions from young people enduring troubles with their own mental health.
A hugely important watch, it made a significant impression on viewers tuning in on Thursday night.
You can catch up on The Big Picture – Young and Troubled on the RTÉ Player here.
There are 2,603 children and adolescents waiting for an appointment with a child and adolescent Mental Health Team, who treat vulnerable children in Ireland with moderate to severe mental health problems. 1,322 have been waiting more than 3 months #RTEBigPic
— RTÉ (@rte) April 26, 2018
Thank you for #RTEBigPic. Important our national broadcaster highlights area of youth mental health. The awareness and conversation is getting there but our systems simply are not. Mental health is great epidemic of our youth generation and time we recognized this and progress.
— Niall Breslin (@nbrez) April 26, 2018
I truly struggle with watching this #RTEBigPic. Breaks my heart. Why can’t our governments previous and current see that this is biggest issue facing our youth today. Please anyone watching contact your local TD. We all have a responsibility here. #youthmentalhealth
— Niall Breslin (@nbrez) April 26, 2018
Watching Millie's story here in studio with her mother. Devastated silence. So many talks happening in schools are about banishing stigma & encouraging kids to be brave enough to reach out. Fruitless if what awaits them after they've made that leap isn't adequate. #rtebigpic
— Eoghan McDermott (@eoghanmcdermo) April 26, 2018
Heartbreaking to watch #rtebigpic and the issues surrounding youth mental health. We really need to get moving on this, move along the conversation and take action, some of the stories are horrible to hear!
— Kevin McManamon (@kevmc15) April 26, 2018
Was only during the week I'd lunch with a few of my close friends and I brought up mental health. We all opened up about struggling with it at various times and how we manage. It was the first time we ever spoke about it.Felt so good after. Hopfully times are changing #rtebigpic
— Rory's Stories (@RorysStories) April 26, 2018
I've worked in CAMHS for 15 years, staff are traumatised, the system is traumatised but most importantly those young people who are already traumatised should be protected from further trauma #RTEBigPic #youthmentalhealth
— Mark Smyth (@psychpolis) April 26, 2018
— Dr. Eddie Murphy (@dreddiemurphy) April 26, 2018
Ireland is crying out for more qualified clinical psychologists to deal with the long waiting lists for youth mental health services, but getting onto a clinical psych degree programme is near impossible. This makes no sense #RTEBigPic
— Jessie Barr (@JessieBarr247) April 26, 2018
According HSE figures for September 2017, there were 2,333 children and young people on waiting lists to be seen by CAMHS, many of them had been waiting over a year for initial assessment. #RTEBigPic #YouthMentalHealth @RTEOne
— Barnardos Ireland (@Barnardos_IRL) April 26, 2018
Main image via YouTube/RTÉ