The other day, I was sat in the living room, studying away whilst my mum had her soaps on (sucker for a drama story is my mum!) when one of the characters in Coronation Street was speaking about something that caught my attention instantly. It was about developing an eating disorder as a way of coping with distress. It really hit home with me, as I began to feel that raw emotional turmoil that once consumed my whole life. What shocked me the most about this whole thing, is how much this reminder affected me.
That feeling never gets easier. But what does get easier, is finding a way of coping with these thoughts and feelings. With help and support from those around me, and from within myself, I have found my own way of overcoming the depths of my mental illnesses and learning to live a for filling life day by day. It made me realise just how far I have come. I am so truly grateful for the hardships now because it has made me follow a path to helping others make their own journey through recovery too.
But it all wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t speak out about my negative thoughts. By staying closed off, I was making the problems worse, allow the illnesses to become more ingrained in my mind. Through help and support, I have learned that it is okay to have a mental illness (though the phrasing does annoy me a little). It is apart of me, as well as millions/billions of people, so there is no logical reason to hide away.
‘Dignity in Mental Health-Psychological & Mental Health First Aid for All’
This year’s World Mental Health Day is aimed at those who are in distress. Tragic events take place all too often. Car accidents, serious illness, physical or mental abuse, natural disasters as well as pinnacle life changes, can all have a bearing on somebody’s mental health. Many suffers are going undetected, unaware, or afraid that they can’t speak about how their life experiences have impacted on their wellbeing. This really does make me feel so upset at the thought of people not being able to see a way out of their issues.
No one should be limited to receiving support, no matter what the problem. Mental health is just as important, if not, more important than physical health. In order for us all to live our lives to the full, and share with the world what we have to offer, we need to be in the best frame of mind to do so. By 2030 it is predicted that if we don’t act urgently, depression will become the leading illness in the whole of the world’s population. Now that is an extremely terrifying thought.
You all know that I am more than willing to speak openly about my illnesses, but I am one of very few who are able to. For a long time, I believed that people thought that I must be ‘absolutely mad’ if I knew them about my illnesses. Yet I am not. It stopped me from socialising because I thought other saw me as the ‘crazy’ one. The stigma that is still attached to this fundamental part of all of our lives, clouds over and stops us from being able to talk to one another more openly and honestly about our negative thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. How can we expect to find happiness, when there is no happiness from within?
I won’t carry on rambling on (as I tend to do if you hadn’t noticed) so I will leave you with this final note. If you know of someone, or you are that someone, who is suffering from that isn’t always visible to the eye, please speak up and talk about what is going on. It isn’t as scary as you may believe it to be, trust me. It can only get better by acknowledging the need for change.
Start talking. Start asking. Start telling.
Start standing up the world’s mental health.