The following blog posts are written by people with personal experience of depression. 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.


Others are more ashamed of my mental health problems than me

"Crazy Eddie".

"Crazy Eddie" is a nickname one of my British school teachers gave me when I was attending primary school in West Africa, in an end of term review. I faked laughing along as I was mocked, as I had become accustomed to it, and beamed a deceitful smile. It became one of the few coping mechanisms I adopted while in denial. However, the embarrassment I used to face at that particular school was not always humoured like this.

People around me didn’t believe in mental illness

Living with Asperger syndrome (AS) and mental health issues is not an easy feat. It never is. Imagine yourself in a room full of people. All those people are laughing and mingling. Meanwhile, you aren’t. You’re sitting there in the corner all alone, watching everyone make nice with each other. Nobody even acknowledges that you’re there.

I was terrified of going off work with depression

When you look at this picture you probably see a happy girl enjoying a night out with her partner. What you don’t see is the story behind the picture. Three days before, I had a nervous breakdown and had just been signed off work with anxiety and depression.

It felt like I lost my identity to depression

I feel like I’ve lost a lot of things to depression: time, energy, motivation. But none of these compares with the feeling that I lose myself and my identity when I’m depressed.

I’ve always been an over-achiever and a perfectionist. I would go above and beyond to help people. I rarely missed a day at my job. I was the responsible one and the one other people could count on. Except when I was depressed.

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