The following blog posts are written by people with personal experience of anxiety. By talking openly, our bloggers hope to increase understanding around mental health, break stereotypes and take the taboo out of something that – like physical health – affects us all.


Being able to talk about mental health can take a weight off your shoulders

A simple gesture, a simple ‘Hey, how are you?’ can make all the difference in someone’s day. Talking about how the world around you is closing in on you, how you feel alone, how it’s raining gasoline and you’re trying your hardest to resist the urge to set yourself on fire can be very very challenging to talk about especially if you’ve never had that space to talk about it before.

As a teacher with a mental illness, I’m a role model, not a risk

I’m a school teacher with a mental illness.  I was subjected to two years of relentless bullying and constant questioning of my performance. On one occasion, another staff member swore at me because I was anxious. They were relentless in their criticism of the symptoms of my anxiety. Questioning my mental health, my competence and my capabilities as a teacher. This only served to increase my anxiety and upset, the more I got upset, the more they questioned my fitness to teach.

Talking about mental health will lessen the stigma

Just before Christmas this year I began to have thoughts that weren't entirely to my liking. I put it down to the usual feelings I get around that time. They'll pass.

Christmas came around, the thoughts were getting worse. The nagging thought that something isn't right. I was deeply unhappy. It was only Christmas Day afternoon that I found myself at peace. As a family we were all enjoying time together.

I needed understanding for my OCD. Instead I was judged

If mental illness could be seen on a sufferer maybe society wouldn't say "just get over it."

One of my biggest challenges was trying to get my friends to accept what I was going through. I never expected them to understand my anxiety or OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) but a listening ear would have been great.

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