Mental health problems affect 1 in 4 people every year and no one should feel ashamed. By sharing our experiences, together we can end the stigma.

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My mental illness is my reality - it's not a choice

Debbie, March 6, 2020

I suffer from complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD), major depressive disorder (MDD) and anxiety, which at times makes my life difficult and unbearable.

I find that mental health is still a very taboo subject. Many people are still ignorant to mental health and don’t treat it seriously because it’s not really visible.

“Pull yourself together”

“Try harder”

“You CAN help it”

“It can’t be true”

“Put it behind you, it happened years ago”

…are only a few remarks I’ve heard. 

Stereotypes and stigma stopped me from talking about my eating disorder

Connor , March 2, 2020

In late 2018, I was diagnosed with bulimia. Although I was suffering for a long time before this, I was living in denial that something was genuinely wrong and I needed help. Like many young men, I was never told to talk about my problems – never mind anything about mental illness. Instead, we are told to simply get over it. Rather than talk about what is bothering us, we are told to keep it down and carry on pushing forward.

See the Bigger Picture - Jason's Story

Jason , February 24, 2020

Any diagnosis of a mental disorder is frightening, but so too are those crushing depressions when you can’t function, the times when life is simply too much or when you are simply out of control. It was after my second suicide attempt that I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. The crushing, life draining, depressions I had noticed (obviously), but somewhere down the line I seemed to have missed the mania.

See the Bigger Picture - Billie's Story

Billie, February 24, 2020

Initially when I was diagnosed, I was thrilled. I identified with the symptoms and my diagnosis meant I could finally get help, but when I googled borderline personality disorder (BPD) it was horrible to read how people talked about us. I read articles about how to get out of a relationship with someone with a personality disorder, how ‘toxic’ we are and how to spot us. It made me feel too ashamed to tell anyone for a long time.

See the Bigger Picture - Antonio's Story

Antonio, February 24, 2020

There’s a limitation on who you can tell that you have schizophrenia - especially being from the BAME community. Not everyone understands schizophrenia or thinks it’s a real thing. Some people might think it means having a split personality, but it’s not like that.

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