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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Katie's 3 things not to say

"Around mental health in general, there is a lot of stigma attached, a lot of misconceptions and a lot of phrases that tend to get used towards people with mental illness."

Watch Katie talk about the three most unhelpful things you can say to someone with a mental health problem and the impact this has on them: 

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.

Having PND does not make me an unfit mum

When my very much wanted and precious daughter was born two years ago, after a difficult pregnancy, we both suffered from an infection and were in hospital for a week.

As overjoyed as I was to have my dear little girl, I felt numb and overwhelmed. I did not have a family support network, as my mum was ill with vascular dementia and my father was bedbound from a stroke.

Having depression does not make me a failure

As a professional boxer, most people around me only see the finale – me stepping into the ring, in great physical shape and performing well under the lights and cameras. Amidst the occasion, it is easy to assume that everything is fine.

As my family and friends watch me compete, my true state of mind is not really questioned. And so, I continue to war with my 'lower thoughts' just as I do in the ring, alone.

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