#GetTheInsideOut

So while at work today I have seen the hashtag #GetTheInsideOut flying around. So after looking into this I realised it was to help those suffering with mental health. Straight away I knew I had to be involved as the whole reason I started this blog was to stamp out the stigma which surrounds the illness and this hashtag is working hand in hand with my goal!

Lloyds Bank and Mental Health UK have launched a new TV advertising campaign on Channel 4 to encourage more people to feel comfortable speaking about mental health.

“Too many people living with a mental health problem feel isolated and misunderstood. Yet we all have mental health so the more we talk and listen, the easier it becomes for everyone. This campaign will help get mental health out in the open, where it belongs”

– Brian Dow, Managing Director of Mental Health UK

The adverts feature Lloyds Bank colleagues, members of the public and celebrities – including Professor Green, Jeremy Paxman, Rachel Riley and Alex Brooker – playing a variation of the ‘Who am I?’ sticky-note guessing game, to explore the common misconceptions about living with a non-visible disability using the hashtag #GetTheInsideOut.

There have been a few familiar faces who have taken part already and as a result we can raise the awareness of people suffering with mental health and show this is not something to be ashamed of.  Remember You are not alone!

Lloyds Bank conducted research* with Mental Health UK and found that 67% of people in Britain feel society is more comfortable talking about mental health conditions now compared to 5 years ago. However, 3 in 4 still believe there is a significant stigma attached to people with mental health conditions, and nearly a quarter are still uncomfortable talking about mental health with a friend or family member.


This is something which I do feel very passionate about as I suffered for many years not speaking to anyone as I was ashamed. No one ever understood, I would go to counselling sessions in secret only my closest of friends would know where I have been but I would never really go through the ins and outs. I would just smooth over it like it was nothing.

It wasn’t until February last year when I was taken into hospital that I started to open up to those around me, even then it wasn’t an easy thing to do. It has always been something I have struggled with, people would never understand and even still now this is something which is not understood by lots of people… this is what saddens me, as some don’t even want to be educated and just want to believe that this is someone choosing to be a ‘victim’ this is NOT the case. We all want to be better and don’t want to be known as the girl/boy suffering with mental health!

It took me over 10 years to even speak about my thoughts/mental health and finally I have got the strength to speak aloud and this is all thanks to my mental health nurses at the Radbourne Unit in Derby. The NHS were able to provide me with a lot of support and I couldn’t be more indebted to these women.

Mental health is something which affects most of us at some point in our life and yet we shy away from speaking up. Take some time to speak to someone you care about and open up get those feelings inside out, it is more important than you think! You are not alone and remember that you are important and relevant. I challenge you all to take a selfie with a post it note on your head, with the hashtag #GetTheInsideOut. Then share this on your social media accounts to show your support and help those suffering show that we do care!

If you do take your selfie please tag me, to show how this post has encouraged you to take part!! 

Here is mine!

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I look forward to seeing your pictures!


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Losing a loved one

This is something which is very close to my heart and is something we can all relate to  which we will all experience in our lifetimes which is sad to even think about as it is truly heartbreaking! I wish we didn’t have to deal with the whole grief process as it can break the strongest of people.

I have already briefly touched up on this but I lost my mum 16 years ago and it is one of the hardest things I have ever had to deal with in my life. This is something which I struggle with each day and I miss her more and more every single day!!

I do think that life is rubbish at times as it can throw some hard things our way but as I’ve always been told you are only given what you can cope with and at times I think thats not fair! Why me? Why do I have to say goodbye to so many of my loved ones? Its always me! I am sure those of you who have lost a loved one can truly relate to this.

When it comes to losing a loved one there is the grief process which we go through and there is no time frame for going through this. There are 5 steps of grief. I will go into this a little bit more.

Denial & Isolation

The first reaction to death of a loved one is to deny the reality of the situation. Denial is a defence mechanism which happens with immediate shock of the loss, numbing us of our emotions. We block out the words and hide from the facts. We start to feel as though life is meaningless and is nothing worth any value what so ever. Luckily enough for most people this is a temporary feeling.

Anger

As masking effects of denial and isolation start to wear off, reality starts to set in and with that the pain emerges. We are not ready for this and it comes a little overwhelming. The emotion is directed to anger, this can be aimed at objects, complete strangers, friends or family.

This can be directed at our deceased love one! We know that the person is not to be blamed but emotionally we may resent this person for causing us so much pain and leaving us! I know I feel like this a lot now! As we start to feel guilty for being angry we end up becoming more angry and frustrated.

Bargaining 

The normal reaction to feelings of helplessness and vulnerability is often a need to be able to regain control through a series of ‘If only’ statements which could include.

If only I could of been there for them….

If only I knew what they was going through…

If only they have spoken to me about this….

If only they had been to see a different doctor and got a second opinion….

This is an attempt to bargain. Guilt often accompanies bargaining. We start to believe there was something we could have done differently to have helped save our loved one, but in reality we know we couldn’t of done anything to help.

Depression

This is one which I can imagine we can all relate to. There are two types of depression which are related to the mourning process. This first one if a reaction to practical implication relating to the loss, sadness and regret predominate this type of depression. We start to become worried about the costs and burial. Worrying about how we have spent less time with others who depend on us.

The second type is more subtle and in a sense more private. It is a quiet preparation to separate and to bid our loved ones a farewell. Sometimes we just really need a hug.

Acceptance

Getting to this stage is something which I could only dream of as I still have not reached this stage! So not everyone can reach this stage, death may be suffer and unexpected or we may never see beyond our anger or denial. It is not a mark of bravery to resist the inevitable and to deny ourselves to chance to make our peace.

Coping with loss is ultimately a deeply personal and singular experience — nobody can help you go through it more easily or understand all the emotions that you’re going through. But others can be there for you and help comfort you through this process. The best thing you can do is to allow yourself to feel the grief as it comes over you. Resisting it only will prolong the natural process of healing.

When it comes to losing a loved one try to take some time for yourself, giving yourself the time to deal with the shock and loss you are going through. This is something which I didn’t do and now I am paying the price. Make sure you remember that each others journey is completely different to the next persons, don’t put pressure on yourself because your sister/brother/friend is dealing with this a lot better and quicker than you! You are different and can’t be compared to anyone else.

I can tell you from my experience that everyone deals with things differently. Life has a way of throwing other things in your path which can delay or speed the process up, you just need to ensure you give yourself the time you need. Even once the grieving process is done you may have good and bad days… allow yourself these days. Even after 16 years I miss my mum every single day and there is not a day that goes by where I don’t think about her…. I love her more than life itself! She was my rock and will be until the day I die!

Is there anything you struggle with when it comes to losing a loved one?

*My own Photos

 

 


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