So it’s been a while since I last posted, six months to be exact.  A lot has happened in those six months with regards to my well-being, including finally being diagnosed with PTSD, and now undergoing EMDR therapy.

Well-being

As you know I care passionately about mental health awareness. Furthermore I love the fact that more and more of us are now starting to talk openly about our struggles. So I wanted to share a little more of my story.

I was bullied all through Junior School from years 3-6.  I moved from a small village to a new town when I was 7, changing schools.  Being the new girl, I was quiet, I was an easy target.  I can’t actually tell you a lot about those 4 years of school as I have unconsciously blocked it all out.  It’s part of the reason I still can’t spell very well, I struggle with nouns and verbs (don’t even mention a subordinate clause I have no idea what that is) and I have no idea when to properly use a colon or a semi colon.  I’ve very, very few memories of those years.  But what I do know is it has affected my whole life and changed me as a person. 

Therapy anyone?

My depression wasn’t diagnosed till I was in my late teens and found myself in an abusive marriage, since then I have suffered from 3 major episodes.  Similar to a lot of sufferers I didn’t realise how ill I was a lot of the time, I ‘self-medicated’.   

I used:

Alcohol, it didn’t help! 

Drugs, they didn’t help! 

Self-harm, it didn’t help! 

Anti-depressants, they did help! Kinda… 

However the one thing that did and does help is talking, therapy in my opinion is the one thing that can really help.  Understanding yourself and why you feel how you do and how you can change that, is one of the greatest tools you can have.  And just knowing that you are not alone, that someone cares can make a huge difference. 

Now there are lots of therapies out there. But ‘therapy’ doesn’t have to be seeing a ‘therapist’, just speaking to someone you trust can be therapy enough, seeking help from a counsellor can be just what you need. What I’m trying to say is the sooner you can talk to someone, whoever that is, the better.

“A problem shared, is a problem halved.”

  • 20% of adolescents may experience a mental health problem in any given year.
  • 50% of mental health problems are established by age 14 and 75% by age 24.
  • 10% of children and young people (aged 5-16 years) have a clinically diagnosable mental problem, yet 70% of children and adolescents who experience mental health problems have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age.

https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/statistics/mental-health-statistics-children-and-young-people

Time to get real!

We need to be open and honest, we need to be there for ourselves and each other.

I don’t want anyone to ever get to the stage I did 10 years ago. I don’t want anyone to feel their friends, their family, their kids are better off without them.  To write that note that says goodbye.  To swallow as many tablets as they can and lie down in bed, close their eyes and wish to never wake up.

So, let’s be open.  Let’s admit when we aren’t okay, let’s admit we sometimes need help. 

‘It’s okay to not be okay’ 

It’s good to talk, in fact you need to talk!  Therefore the sooner we talk, the sooner we realise we are not alone, the sooner we can start on the road to recovery.  Talk to a friend, talk to a family member, talk to a teacher, talk to the Samaritans, just talk to someone! And if you hear ‘snap out of it’, ‘you’ll be fine, don’t worry’, ‘stop being silly’ then walk away and find someone else to talk to.  Because there is always someone out there willing to listen, willing to care and willing to take that journey with you, by your side. 

It’s okay to talk! 

The strongest people were once the broken ones, they learned how to fix themselves with or without help from anyone.

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