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  • Writer's pictureLouise G

LGMH Is One.

Many years ago, I had a big dream.

A dream that a mental health nurse could be a therapist, a counsellor, a coach, an educator, and so much more. A dream that I could get away from the medical model of mental health care and deliver an integrative mental health service that was accessible, flexible, creative, and provided something that my local community needed.

I certainly had my moments of doubt along the way when some told me that it could not be done.

"But you're a mental health nurse and mental health nurses are not therapists", they would say. "Why would someone see you instead of a psychologist?"

Well, actually, I have come to find that there are loads of reasons why, and I feel so proud to have risen above those incorrect beliefs others held about mental health nursing as a profession.

The truth is mental health nurses can be EVERYTHING.

In Australia, we start off medically trained and so we have a great foundation for understanding how the entire body works, co-morbidities, different treatments and medications, ethics in healthcare. Outside of the classroom and labs, we spend over 1000 hours unpaid, fine-tuning our bed side manner and communication skills, supporting individuals and their loved ones during their most vulnerable moments. We go above and beyond both as individuals and as a team, gaining vital exposure to acute and complex presentations that a lot of professionals do not get to experience.

When nurses graduate, we can choose to specialise, and I chose psychiatry. I never once doubted making this decision. I knew it was for me. I got to work across Australia in very different settings. Inpatient and community, immigrant mental health, indigenous mental health, perinatal mental health and emergency psychiatry. Then, over the last six years, I found my passion and specialised further in child and adolescent mental health, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders. This included, undertaking training in a number of different therapeutic modalities, because I knew that I wanted to be a therapist.

And so, after years of further education and upskilling myself, the day came to take the leap into private practice. I was so excited but equally terrified. My vision was clear and I hoped that my local community would see this as well. This being that I step away from the medical model of care that I had spent a lot of time working under and move into a more holistic, person-centered, approachable and integrative space. I wanted a space that didn't feel clinical, rigid, scary or prescriptive.

One year in and I feel confident that I have done what I set out to achieve.

However, I couldn't have done it without the selfless support of some key people in my life. They know who they are. Never doubting, always encouraging, reassuring and mentoring me, keeping me on track when times got tough. And for that, I will be forever grateful.

Equally, without my amazing local community, other local businesses, my clients and their loved ones, LGMH would simply not exist. I thank you for trusting me to be a part of your wellbeing journey. It really is a privilege to be chosen to share in your recovery, to watch you learn and grown, and to also have you teach me things too.

And so I say cheers to the year that was, and hooray for the year ahead. Anyone who knows me well will say that I never stop, and that means there will be plenty more things in store for LGMH in the future, and I cannot wait!

Lou xox

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1 Comment

Amy G
Amy G
May 19


Amazing work with persistence, dedication and commitment.

Well done xxoo

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