First of all, apologies as I haven’t written a blog for a while. It’s down to a few reasons, work family also, I have been reading a few blogs and social media (tweets, Facebook posts) .
Everybody has their own unique way of writing and telling their stories which is amazing, it’s really helpful and takes some bottle to really open up and tell all, I have total respect to you all and thank you.
While reading them, I can see myself in most but also get why there is this stigma (which is bollocks). I tried to read from a neutral point of view and read every word as though I’d never struggled with anxiety attacks and mental health issues due to them. The words , the sentences they seem fictional!! Even though I know that they are 100% true, a ‘normal’ person reading them will think that we are lying. But why would people make things up? I write not to scare sufferers, I do not lie, I just want to let people know that it is ok, EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT!! I’m willing to tell you what goes on in my head and my life to try and help if you want to talk about or read it.
The help is great, can’t fault the blogs, however I’m going to talk about an incident, one like no other has made me think about people and my mental illness.
During the years, I must admit…. Even though the panic/anxiety has been crippling and I would not wish it upon my worst enemy, there have been some stories to tell. I cringed at the time, but when we (I mean close friends and family) talk about it them, laughter comes of it.
Which can only be good?
When I was about 25, the attacks were in full flow, I could not be left alone , never!! As you know , I was desperate , dependant on everyone and anyone. Selfishly struggling through that part of my life.
This was written by someone very close to me who lives with mental illness. I see what it’s like for them to develop anxiety and panic just because they have to go out the door or when it comes time to write an email. I see first hand how isolating mental illness can be, by family and friends and themselves…like they say, it’s lost freedom.
People need to know living with mental illness IS NOT a choice.
Written by Fliss Baker
Twitter is a wonderful thing! I’m four thousand miles away and I’m meeting the like-minded. For info I’m a writer, author, volunteer and guest speaker in mental health and I love it.
Oh, and I have a diagnosis of bipolar.
I receive ongoing professional treatment in an attempt to manage my depressive and manic cycles. I am also in recovery for an eating disorder.
It’s important I introduce myself before my illness because as much as it rules my life at times, I will not let it define me.
I honestly do not know where to start. I am devastated. I was having a hard time deciding what my next post would be about, and then he was gone… As I wrestle and fight to come to terms with this emotional tornado, I stand my ground as the high winds smack the cold tears running down my face. I scream into the unforgiving truth and it just continues to spin more violently out of control. Inside I am dying, but my adrenaline forces me to fight. My muscles burn hot like 1,000 volcanoes and my clenched fists swing illogically at the twisted cold truth. I hit nothing. The tornado runs me over and back again. I jump up when I can, and continue to scream and swing. If it had a mouth it would laugh at me as it pushed me further down into the dirt. The tornado has grown tired of me, and moves on to destroy bigger and better people… just because it can. I lay with my face in the muck, and as I lift my head, I see the vultures and parasites coming right at me. If this was Hollywood, they would already be drawing a chalk outline around my body. It hasn’t even been 24 hours since I heard the news and the ignorant vultures are coming for his legacy and my sanity. Usually, they are innocuous goons in their highly coveted prime time slots, but now they smell the fear and sadness like a shark smells blood in the water and they become apex predators in their own minds. Even though they can’t maintain the momentum for very long, it is an opportunistic feeding on the weak that their ignorance and general hatred fuels because the time is right.
Written by Kelly Risbey
I’ve battled anxiety and depression on and off for almost 20 years. My anxiety started getting bad in high school and I started having panic attacks in my second year of university. This led to my panic disorder diagnosis and my first major battle with anxiety.
Trying to manage school, maintain a good GPA, cope with panic attacks that happened during class, deal with endless anxiety issues, find support, and learn how to battle my panic disorder was exhausting, frustrating, terrifying. All I wanted was my life back. I wanted to go to class, take notes, listen to the lecture, talk to my friends, do homework, have fun, and relax: normal university stuff. It was a long, hard road, but with incredible support, I learned to battle this disorder, I reclaimed my life, and I graduated.
Interview by Samina Raza
December 28, 2014
I had the great pleasure of interviewing Clint Malarchuk, NHL goalie, NHL coach, cowboy, horse dentist and now author of his first book “A Matter of Inches”, the title refers to the bullet in his head, as well as the skate that was actually a few millimeters from his carotid artery! This man is indestructible, thank goodness, knock on wood!
He suffered from OCD, horrible anxiety, depression, alcohol abuse, and finally PTSD because of a horrific hockey injury to his neck. Even dealing with all those mental illnesses, he became a great goalie, playing for, among others, the Buffalo Sabres. And then an NHL coach. While battling his demons and alcohol addiction, he put a bullet in his head and survived with no side effects! His book is a tour de force of honesty, truth and a no holds barred description of his life, good or bad, he put it all to paper. The book is a must read.
Work Under Pressure centres on the personal story of Neil Moon who was so severely bullied by co-workers that he attempted suicide and suffered a breakdown that kept him out of work for 5 years. Neil wants to share his experience as widely as possible to highlight the issues around stress and other mental health issues. Also in the film are experts from Restore and Root & Branch, mental health charities in Oxfordshire who helped Neil in his recovery.
Mental Health is a serious issue for businesses and people alike and it needs to be tackled. As one of our interviewees says if one in 6 employees had an accident at work in any one year there would be an outcry but because its mental health nothing’s being done…
Written by Sarah Fader
I’m Sarah Fader, a mother of two, a blogger, an animal lover and I am living with panic disorder. What this is means is that sometimes, out of nowhere, I feel what is known as “fight or flight.” There is a seemingly imminent threat, when in actuality I am completely safe. Panic is a funny thing. I’ve laid in bed awaiting sleep and all at once I would feel a pain in my cervical spine. The pain would trigger a automatic thought in my mind: I am dying.
Written by David Sandum
People often ask me, “Have you always known you wanted to be an artist?” The fast answer is no. It wasn’t until many years after my first exhibit that I made a conscious decision to become one.
I had originally planned to become a business consultant. During my senior year of college, however, my life started veering off course. I had trouble sleeping, cried for no reason, thought I would fail everything, and went to the emergency room twice, terrified I was having a heart attack because my chest hurt so badly. The doctors would tell me nothing was wrong, but I was convinced I was dying.