Mental Health Does Not Discriminate.
As we enter the middle of May I am reminded that it is mental health awareness month.I feel I have a responsibility to promote this subject and to talk openly about how this subject affects me. I also want to draw attention to those people in the public eye who have been brace enough to discuss their own relationships with their mental health illnesses. Whilst my aim is always to provide an honest account of life for me I also want to focus attention to those who have bravely come out of the darkness and spoken up about their illnesses, and to those who have been allies to the many organisations out there promoting mental health campaigns. The fact that well known famous people have come forward demonstrates that mental health is capable of affecting every many women and child on the planet it is not racists, or ageist and is not selective when it comes to the classes in society. This illness is ruthless and sadly all to many times it can completely destroy the life of someone ill and their loved ones by taking over them completely to the point where they feel suicide is the only option to stop the suffering.
On a more personal level I was unaware that I was “self medicating” my illness for decades and it wasn’t until I almost had a serious accident that I woke up to realise what was happening. With modern technology so advanced these days after watching a tv programme featuring married phycologists nik and Eva speakmann I dhave cider to research their therapy in more depth and came across a YouTube video of them speaking in front of oxford university students. Previously in the media it had been well documented that they has been helping Kerry Keaton, singer from atomic kitten. She was attending this seminar to talk in more depth about the process of receiving treatment from nik and Eva. THIS Account of me watching the video was the turning point for me and hit me so hard it left me quite literally speechless for a while. By listening to what all parties were saying on the video I slowly realised that so much was directly resonating with my own life and feelings. For the first time in over twenty years I had realised I had a problem, and I was beginning to see what the “schemers “ were. I began to address these issues immediately and turned to a mental health organisation for support. Despite feeling anxious and in some ways denying my illness I knew so much was at steak if I didn’t deal with this from now on. I immersed myself into research, and began to become interested in more celebrities who by now were becoming more open about their illness.
My points are this, mental health doesn’t discriminate, there should be no shame in the subject more people should talk about it and ask for help. The stigma and level of taboo only exists due to lack of knowledge and understanding by people, more work needs to be done to educate people in order for attitudes to change and to make life easier for people who are unwell to live in a more supportive environment without shame hanging over them.From my own perspective, I have been on such an enormous journey since I recognised and accepted my illness I am still learning how to manage on a daily basis but I have come a long way. In fact I would go as far to say that I feel like I am a stronger, better person since I started on this journey, I’m very self aware, I’m learning my triggers, and most importantly I’ve developed a whole new set of skills which mean I can put all this into good use by being able to write about mental health, writing about myself has not only helped me personally but it has taught me to be a better writer and has given me the gift of being able to write poetry. All of these new skills have begun to open so many exciting doors of opportunities for me so instead of feeling ashamed of my illness I’m actually to a large degree thankful for it. You only have to look at the list of famous people who have told their stories recently to realise that you can have this, but at the same time, you can be talented, successful, and become famous for your skills. I am extremely grateful to The Speakmans for their wonderful work, but I am equally grateful to Kerry because if it wasn’t for her talking with Nic and Eva that day on the video, my life may have been very different now.