Friends, family and mental health: blogs and stories

These blogs are written by people with personal experience of mental health problems and about their experiences of friends, family and mental health. This could be a mother writing about how she supported her daughter or someone writing about how their friends treated them differently after learning of their mental illness

Our Stigma Shout survey showed that almost 9 out of 10 people with mental health problems (87%) reported the negative impact of stigma and discrimination on their lives. The research also showed that the way family, friends, neighbours and colleagues behave can have a big impact on the lives of people with mental health problems.

Simply talking to someone about their mental health problem can help strengthen relationships, help recovery and challenge the stigmatising stereotypes that surround mental illness.

By writing about their personal experiences of mental health, these bloggers aim to break down stereotypes and take the taboo out of something that affects people across the country. Pledge to share your experience of mental health today >>


I was tired of pretending that everything is fine

 The confident and vibrant girl that I once was became no more. I fell into the trap of depression that seemed to have hit me overnight. I would usually be the one that always hid in the bathroom crying my eyes out and then wipe my own tears away only to walk out those doors like I have it all together. The young fifteen year old girl that I was at the time was drowned with anxiety, fear and a lack of something unknown. I was overwhelmed with the world and fell into exhaustion trying to act like I have it all together. The truth was that I was tired.

I've isolated myself for fear of people judging my anxiety

I was 18 the first time I was completely and utterly whacked round the face by anxiety. It was the summer before I was due to go to university. I remember being at work and suddenly feeling like the world looked different, people became blurry and I felt disorientated- it was terrifying. I left the shop I was working in and my Dad came to meet me, where he took me home to my Mum.

Please, shake off your assumptions about anxiety & mental illness

Anxiety has made me do some pretty strange things over the years. There have been the minor everyday inconveniences, like the bus journeys I’ve insisted on leaving ten stops early because of a sudden and stubborn conviction that I am about to suffocate.

Mental illness has affected my relationships for good and bad

Relationships can be amazing, wonderful, exciting. But they can also be difficult. If I’ve learnt anything, it’s that they take hard work from both parties involved. The vulnerability that comes with falling in love can be an incredibly scary prospect. For those with mental illness, there’s an extra fear that this vulnerability will highlight parts of themselves that can be difficult to understand.

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