If you have chest pains, you go to the heart doctor. Your mental health shouldn’t be treated any differently. If you need to talk to someone about your mental health struggles, resources are available through the Purdue Extension Farm Stress Team.
“Our goal is to reduce the number of farm suicides across the state of Indiana but also to reduce that stigma surrounding mental health,” says Abby Heidenreich, Ag & Natural Resources Extension Educator in Orange County and member of the Purdue Farm Stress Team.
She says the team is a group of educators who have come together in an effort to open up the conversation of mental health in agriculture and reduce the stigma surrounding farmer stress and the help for getting rid of that stress.
“What we do is we get together and put on programs, that’s what we do as educators, we put on programs that talk about stress, talk about how you can recognize stress in yourself and others, talk about what stress can do to your body, and how you can combat that stress a little bit. Some things that you can do to help reduce your stress levels. In agriculture, it’s a very high stress job. That’s no secret. It doesn’t need to be a secret that it’s stressful and that there’s some help out there for the stress.”