Tag Archives: Advice

Let’s Talk About … Parents Struggling with Mental Health

Good Afternoon Munchkins!

Once again, I have another ‘Let’s Talk About…’ for you. I’m actually really enjoying writing these, if not for some advice for you, then as a little bit of release for me. At the end of the day, I did start this blog to allow myself to express everything I want to and I don’t see why it should just include beauty and makeup, even though that is still a massive part of my life.

Today I will be talking to you about Parents Struggling with Mental Health as my Mum in particular, amongst other family members, is really going through a rough time and, as her daughter, it’s quite difficult to know where I stand and what to do. Hence, I will be including different tips of which I have found useful, as much of a learning curve as it still is, and I’m still finding it difficult to know what to do about it. In saying all that, not everyone is the same even if they do have the same illness, so just try these out and if they don’t work, just try again, taking ideas from what worked last time. Like the gay parent thing, I’ve come to realise over time that this is quite a common issue amongst children and teenagers around the world, and that my Mum’s actually a lot easier than some other cases, so just bare that in mind.

So last July my Mum started seeking help from the NHS about struggling with mental health after feeling quite low and depressed for a little while; I didn’t actually know this, it was something I didn’t really notice because we weren’t getting along at the time. I only found out after finding a letter with the NHS logo on, which immediately gave me warning signs because that doesn’t happen to us all the time. Around the same time, my Granny was being tested for cancer and the rest of the family were talking about getting tested because it does seem to run in our genes, so I initially thought it was a blood test or CT scan for that; I also want to be tested, so, of course, I was immediately curious and wanted to know more. I then read that it was about mental health and she was being referred to the NHS support thing for that (it has a particular name, but I can’t remember it right now, I’m really sorry!). I was initially really shocked because, as I say, we weren’t that close so I wasn’t expecting it, but it did kind of make sense: she was in a dead end job which she hated, had a really manipulative, psychologically abusive fiance at the time, and her Mum was about to be diagnosed with the same cancer her Aunt died of. I just saw it as another lie/secret in the mix of everything else and, of course, I was angry.

I think what happened was she had a phone call with someone from the mental health side of the NHS (I don’t want to say specialist because that makes it sound like it was private, but it wasn’t) who asked her a few questions, and she got sent a letter with one of those forms which you fill in and the answers are according to numbers e.g 5 is most like you, 1 is least like you. I don’t know when she initially contacted them, but it did seem to all happen very quickly. Once she’d answered all these questions, they let her know that she suffered from stress and anxiety, the same as me. I haven’t be diagnosed, but I’ve been having panic attacks since I was 7, so I’m kind of taking that as my answer, particularly as they can’t diagnose me at my age due to hormones and the effect that has on my brain.

In the beginning, I was actually really angry because she’d been struggling for a few months and seemed to immediately get help, yet I was here 8/9 years later with no help and no diagnosis, so no validation for what I felt. I kind of get that with a lot of people who are diagnosed before me because I can’t turn round to someone and explicitly be like ‘hey, I’ve got social anxiety’, because it isn’t properly diagnosed or professionally recognised; I look as if I’m just making it up, which I’d never do. I was also very angry at my Mum’s fiance at the time because she literally sat there and said ‘get help or I’m leaving you’, which isn’t going to make anything any better. Considering she was on anti-depressants every day for 7 years by that point, you’d think she’d have a little bit more understanding.

So during July/August of last year, she was sent to these group sessions for people with mental health illnesses like stress, anxiety, OCD etc., and she really did realise she wasn’t that bad in comparison to others, but it did also help her a lot. If I remember rightly, it was like 6-8 weekly, hourly, non-compulsory sessions, but you were referred and, therefore, kind of expected to go. I think it covered things like mindfulness and how to cope with stress and other forms of coping mechanisms, some of which my Mum did take use from. I think she only missed one, maybe two, but she did complete the course of sessions. She was also put onto anti-depressants (Citalopram, I think?) whilst I was staying with my grandparents during the summer, so I was quite nervous to what I would go home to. I think they took 2 weeks until they reached their full effect and started obviously working, so it wasn’t like an overnight change. She claims they work for her, but she is kind of reliant on having 1 or 2 a day, depending on what’s going on that day and how she’s already feeling, and I now notice a more obvious difference when she’s not on them. There have been points where she’s claimed they’re not longer working and she can’t cope again, she is obviously the hardest part because you don’t know what to do; do you let them be upset for a day or risk an overdose? She’s a very petite woman so an overdose would effect her quite significantly, and I don’t endorse that in any way.

Right now, she’s actually okay. She’s had a difficult 6 months, as we all have, with the loss of both of her parents, and her anxiety has really taken it’s toll. The hardest day was when she refused to get out of bed and just cried, and I literally had to force feed her food I taught myself how to cook that afternoon. It’s difficult for me watching a woman who was so strong 2 years ago and I could once rely on become so small and dependent on the others around her. This is one of the reasons her new girlfriend has already moved in – I can’t cope with looking after Mum on her bad days, running this blog, and doing all my school work/revision. Luckily there aren’t many difficult days at the moment, but the whole family feels it when there is. As I did say earlier, though, there are so many people worse off than my Mum.

One of the really noticeable side effects I’ve come to realise since she was diagnosed/put onto her anti-depressants was how confused and fuzzy-headed she is. I’m kind of similar and I’ve been told it’s to do with stress and anxiety, but I think hers is kind of worsened by her anti-depressants relaxing her as much as they do. Obviously they’re doing more good than bad and I’m not expecting her to come off them just because of that, but it does mean that I have had to become so much more independent and kind of make decisions for her, which is kind of crazy at 16 years old.

I know there are so many people worse off than me, so please don’t think this is like a little sympathy vote kind of thing, because it’s really not. I’ve also collected a little list of things I’ve found that have helped my Mum, and would maybe help your parent/guardian/family member, though everyone and their mental health is completely different and individual:

  • Find something to calm them; my Mum’s is puzzles, but she can’t cope if they’re more than 500 pieces!
  • Feed them; even when they say they’re not hungry and how much they shout abuse at you or push you away, they will appreciate it in the end, I can assure you.
  • Let them know you appreciate them; this could be through cooking them a full on meal, or drawing them something, or anything you like to do that they know you enjoy and incorporating the things they like into it. This will just remind them that they are worthwhile and do mean something to someone.
  • Get them to do some little chores; my Mum’s new favourite is walking the dogs, especially with our 6 month old pup! This will remind them they have reason to be on this earth, and just getting them to walk to the end of the garden to water the plants can have a huge effect on them – that new-found Vitamin D from the sun will also benefit them massively!

And that’s it! I hope you have been able to take something from this blog post and it has helped you in some way – that’s one of the main reasons I continue to write these. If you are okay with sharing your story, I would love for you to because it really does help me out and realise I am not alone in this!

Thank you so much for reading and I’ll see you Tuesday,

Rachel xx

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Let’s Talk About … Gay Parents

Good Afternoon Munchkins!

After really enjoying writing the last two ‘Let’s Talk About…’ blog posts over the past few weeks, I thought I would add another one to the little series we’ve created here. Today I will be writing about a topic very close to my heart: having a gay parent. This is an issue that seems to become more common the more I hear about it and the more I research it, whereas in the beginning I really did feel like the only one going through it. I will be speaking about the issues I’ve faced, my acceptance of it and other people’s reactions (which is probably the worst, so I’ll go into most detail about that).

So my history of this has a massive backstory (as per usual!). My Mum was with my Dad for nearly 15 years before meeting a woman and coming out as a lesbian with this women, who she had an affair with. My main issue with my Mum coming out was it was really informal and the fact my Mum was having an affair – I think a lot of people think I had an issue with her being gay when it was, in fact, the way she did it. How you come out has a massive impact on how people react, by the way. She then had that girlfriend and is now onto another one who has recently moved in with us, because she’s a good egg. I found it difficult to accept it in the beginning, but I think it was because I had to cope with my Dad leaving and this new ‘step-mum’, as she made me call her. The first 18 months of her being out was definitely the hardest, but now we’re absolutely fine around it. I was never homophobic and I would hate to think I could have the capability to be just that, but it was very difficult to see my Mum (who I had know pretty well for 14 years!) go from men to women, literally overnight. But I have friends who are gay so the idea itself wasn’t too difficult for me to comprehend.

I’ve found telling people that my Mum’s gay actually a really awkward experience. As I’m planning to start part-time work soon and college come September, I’m going to be meeting loads of new people who I will have to tell, should we form that close a relationship. I’m really worried about what people might ask me, but I have the answers and I’m not one to quieten down if I have an opinion! I’ve had people ask if it’s a midlife crisis, if I was a test-tube baby, whether I had an inkling to the fact she might be gay when I was younger, and I know to expect more as I go through life. I really don’t mind answering these sorts of questions (depending on how people word them, of course) because I know if it was the reverse, I would have a massive list of questions for them myself. What would grind my gears is if people ask really explicit, unnecessary questions because there is this whole stigma around lesbians and they’re used in the porn industry etc., but I can assure you that my 44-year-old mother will not be featured on Porn Hub, thank you very much!

Homophobes have also become apparent since Mum coming out, especially in the family. One of her uncles has been quite blatantly against her sexuality, including not speaking to us at his own daughter’s wedding. I’ve kind of got to that point where I don’t have time for homophobes and, as much as they anger me, I would literally rather hold the door open for them to walk out of my life, because I really don’t need them here. I think it does upset and anger me more than it does my Mum, but that is because I am so passionate with my beliefs! I’m a massive supporter of the LGBTQ+ community, as I’m sure you know by now, so I’m not going to even associate myself with people like that.

So I’m just going to give some pointers or advice to those who may have just learnt that their parent is gay because it’s as much of a difficult time for you as it is for them:

  • Just be calm. They’re still the same person they were as they raised you (no matter how old you are) and, as far as I’ve noticed, doesn’t mean they change personality-wise at all. They’re still your parent.
  • Support them. They are your family and nothing will change that, so it’s better to support them even if you are struggling because it will be beneficial to all of you in the long run. I’ve also found it could bring you closer, as well.
  • Treat them as you’ve always treated them. This kind of follows from the first point but there is no point in changing your way around them (i.e. treading on eggshells) because they will sense your awkwardness and then they will feel awkward themselves.

And there we have it (I think!)! I hope you have been able to take something from this blog post – I feel like I haven’t covered everything, so please don’t hesitate to ask me for any more advice I may have missed out on! If you’re going through this or have gone through this, please comment down below with your story because I would love to find someone to talk to about this properly, instead of just in a little blog post!

Thank you so much for reading and I’ll see Tuesday,

Rachel xx

Let’s Talk About … Being Friends With People Who Are Trans

Good Afternoon Munchkins!

Today I decided to write another ‘Let’s Talk About…’ because I actually really enjoyed writing last week’s as upsetting as I found it. I just thought it was quite therapeutic and it helped get a lot out of my system, which I needed. So this week I decided to talk to you about being friends with people who are transgender!

With the openness and ability to accept anyone and everyone in this society, there is a very high chance we will at least meet one person who is transgender in our lifetime, and I’m actually fortunate enough to have a couple of my best friends going on this journey. Obviously they’re not my friends because they’re trans, they were my friends for years and years before they came out to me, but I am so grateful that they are welcoming me as openly as they are to be with them every step of the way. As amazing as it is, I kind of feel like there isn’t that much support or guidance for friends who are cisgender (feel as if they fit the gender they were assigned at birth), like myself, because it was a bit of a shocking and unsure experience. Basically, this is just me telling my story and giving people in a similar situation some support because I really felt I had be thrown into the deep end and unknowing as to what to do or say. Just a bit of background information, they’re both female to male.

So I was first told about one my friends in the summer of last year. I wasn’t overly shocked with this one because he appeared pretty masculine anyway and would always be the person to wear a shirt rather than a dress on a night out. He came out to the rest of our friends a couple of months later, I think, and I don’t think they were overly surprised either. At first he was very chilled about it, but after a while he would become very distressed if he didn’t use the right pronouns (e.g. ‘he’ instead of ‘she’) which is completely understandable, and for the New Year he really wanted our entire friendship group to start calling him by his male name and use these correct pronouns. I completely understand why he became so distraught about it, I just wish he told us straight away what to say or when. Not everyone in our school knows so there are still some people we have to be cautious around and I now have to remind myself to call him by his female name around people like his parents or friends of his who don’t know or don’t accept it. So, on that front, I would just say clarify some ground rules or what they want from this so you don’t get the backlash of slipping up every so often. Since him coming out we have done this, but I would suggest doing it earlier as it’s better for both/all of you. I guess it wasn’t the first thing on my mind because it is a very crazy time being told this person is planning on getting x, y and z done to make him more physically masculine in the future.

My second friend that came out is actually the boyfriend of the first friend, and has been my best friend since we were 4 (if you can follow that!). I really did not expect this one, but at the same time I didn’t expect him to come out as gay! This one was much harder for me to get my head around due to knowing him for the past 12 years and remembering how feminine and girly we were as kids, and even in the past few years. I now see that this was an act to stop himself feeling this way or not get us to guess or something like that, but it was still really difficult and I still struggle to see it. At first he came out as gender fluid (when you feel like your one gender one day and the other the next) like a month after the first friend, but recently he’s been making it apparent he is also transgender, not just gender fluid. I think looking back at this occasion, I would definitely say keep an open mind and support the person in question but be there with them through everything and whether they decide they’re transgender or change their mind, or whatever other path they choose to take.

Something else I really want to talk about is when your friend goes to get treatment. My first friend has been referred to people who can diagnose him as transgender (in the UK you can only get treatment and fully transition once you’ve been medically diagnosed) and even to a gender clinic in London so that as soon as he turns 18 next year, he can get the treatment he wants. My second friend hasn’t as of yet because he hasn’t come out to his Mum and referrals mean getting parents/guardians involved at this age, so that isn’t possible right now. My first friend also has a binder and wears boxers which he wears either every day or most days, depending on the other clothes he wears (particularly with our school uniform). I’m really happy and comfortable with talking to them about transitioning and their plans as a couple/as individuals because I know they are and I want to be in the loop as much as possible – I’m a huge believer in I can’t help you unless you help yourself. I also find it really interesting and I just think it would be more beneficial to them if I’m like ‘I’m here, all ears’, rather than expecting them to make the first move. I don’t want to put them in an awkward situation, but at the same time I want to assure them I am here to listen. I can understand why they wouldn’t want to come up to me and be like ‘I’m wearing a binder today’, but you also need to approach it very delicately and appropriately. As I said earlier, be with them every single step of the way and don’t let them fall without you picking them up afterwards.

Another thing I’ve found is the tensions it can have between friends, particularly now that our whole squad knows. There’s been a few friends who have had major fallout’s with these two because they refuse to use the correct pronouns after constant reminders or have explicitly offended gender in some form, which I have had to stand up against for them. This clearly doesn’t benefit my friends mental health or feelings surrounding being valid, but it does build other relationships with other friends much more and proves that strength, and who blatantly doesn’t want to be there throughout the whole thing. Even though it seems difficult now, it will all balance out and be good in the end, I promise. Just hang on in there because there will come a day where you will meet your friends in their truest form and that is something I am most looking forward to. I might cry to be entirely honest with you!

And there we have it! I hope you have enjoyed this blog post – I loved writing this blog post much more than I thought I would, to be honest! If you are trans, let me know if these sound good to you, or if you’re going through a similar thing to me I really hope it’s helped. Just be you; you’re their friend for a reason and they would only tell you if they thought you could handle it. I can assure you, they are much more scared about it than you! I’ve also tried to step really delicately around this subject because I know how easily people can get offended around it, so I’m really sorry if I have offended you because that really was never my intention.

Thank you so much for reading and I’ll see you Tuesday,

Rachel xx

Keeping a Smile On My Face

Good Afternoon Munchkins. Just as I turned my netbook on to write this blog post the sun has come out, typical! Still, I will power through (name that British sitcom) and keep you happy with a new blog post.

Keeping a Smile On My Face is something that over the past few months have got easier since I got better (last year I became depressed) and I love smiling, especially during these Summer months because as cheesy as it is there’s so much to smile about. I live by the sea so if I’m ever upset or a bit stressed I can take a 5 minute walk to the seafront and look over the sea. I do not, however, recommend this on a stormy day, that could have the opposite effect! This is pretty much my so-called ‘Happy Place’ as it were.

I know from experience that it’s easy to smile after crying even though the smiles mean nothing. If you just stop thinking about the negatives and start thinking about the positives than life does become a whole lot easier. For example, if you’re continuously arguing with your parents, at least be thankful they’re here or if your boyfriend broke up with you at least you have a group of supportive friends and family around you. Obviously if there is no positive substitution then there are things like Childline or Samaritans that will help you. When I was depressed I was thinking things like ‘Oh, you’re so ungrateful, you have perfect life compared to others, you have an amazing family and a great group of friends’ and that only made me worse because I felt bad. Please don’t feel like that, it will only bring you down more!

I know what you’re all going to be thinking ‘Oh, you’re only 13, how can you know all this? Why should I take advice from you?’. I don’t want to make you feel like you should listen to me but just that I am here for you as I am with anyone who is in need of help. I’m just sharing my experiences to show that you are in no way at all alone. At school when it was me doing all this it was somehow seen as ‘cool’ to self-harm and I actually know people who did it for popularity which I find completely sick as many of you probably think so it was either seen as nothing or for popularity which of course it wasn’t.

I didn’t get counselling or anything like that I just got out of the habit of crying myself to sleep and stuff like that and to get my mind off it I would do things I enjoyed so much more. For example you could try these:

– Reading

– Writing

– Acting

– Girls nights in/out (age permitting, obviously)

– Listening to positive music

– Excercise

– Weekend job

– Joining a club

– Start a blog (no hint or anything!)

I could go on for ages of ways to get your mind off it.

For me I just went on holiday with my parents and a friend and I couldn’t do anything to myself then so that’s how I got out the habit. I think the last time I cried myself to sleep from depression was the start of October last year which doesn’t feel that long ago but is still 9 months. I still get the occasional crying-due-to-hormones like most people but it’s just got so much better. Can I just say, we didn’t go on holiday because I was depressed it just happened to take my mind off matters. Also, I stopped listening to sad songs and decided to go for more upbeat ones and watched more Comedy (thank God for Comedy Central!).

My Summer Holidays start on Wednesday and I’m so looking forward to spending time with friends and family and going on holiday and just spending some well-needed me time. This time last year I would’ve dreaded being alone of fear of what I would do to myself but I’m so much happier. I’m also wearing shorts, dresses and skirts which were non-existent in my wardrobe, I just want the storms to go away!

I just thought I would quickly mention that Shout magazine are in the middle of their Project Smile (I think that’s what it’s called) and for the past few and upcoming months they’ve included tips and tricks on how to stay positive. I find this so fun to do because it actually gives me more ideas of how to spend the 6 weeks of lazy days. That’s only in the UK so I’m not sure if they do it worldwide or not. Sorry if it’s not.

Also, (this is going to sound mental after this whole blog post) this week I had my first proper/biggest panic attack so sorry if this is not up to standard but I’m still a bit shakey. It was because of Sports Day and then I thought people were judging me and I could hardly speak to the lady serving me in Subway today because of my lack of confidence. I will get better though, I should be fine come Monday or whatever.

As I say, sorry if this isn’t the best of blog posts and I will redo it if you want me to, but I thought it’s Saturday, the sun wasn’t out, got nothing to do, might as well upload!

Thank you for reading and I’ll see you soon,

Rachel xx

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Email Me: rachelkate01@yahoo.co.uk

My Last Blog: Be The Change You Wish To See In The World

 

 

Anger Issues

Good afternoon Munchkins! It feels like ages since I last uploaded but if you remember I uploaded early last week then I was on holiday, so you know. I’m not going to say much about it but that Primark in Liverpool, nearly fainted! I went at like 4 in the afternoon and it was still busy. Just saying, how do you people get around? Anyway, Primark is not the main reason of this blog post, it is about Anger Issues.

Cambridge English Dictionary has the definition for anger as ‘a strong feeling that makes you want to hurt someone or be unpleasant because of something unfair or unkind that has happened’. For most cases this is true, but sometimes people can get annoyed a lot more easily or just see red for what other people would see as ‘no particular reason’.

From a young age I’ve known of ‘anger’ because there was a boy in my year who had really bad anger issues and even though we were like 5 he would still continually get into trouble. I guess its one of those things, it’s just really hard to pinpoint where I learnt about it but I think that was it really. My brother sort of has Anger Issues, but it’s undiagnosed so we can’t be sure, as with most things. 

Anger is a natural feeling that everyone will come across, but only when it gets out of control or where the times when you’re angry can hurt yourselves or others is it time to seek help. There are loads of quizzes online but if you want proper help from someone who knows left from right, you go to a doctor. That’s not to say that quizzes aren’t good, but doctors make a judgement based on your history, family history, brain everything. Also, if they start due to hormones personally I think it’s worth getting help because your teenage years are like 5 years and that’s a long time to be suffering.

These are a few tips to help you if you have anger issues or anyone when they get angry:

– Recognise your anger signs

– Count to 10

– Breathe slowly

For long term management of anger:

– Exercise

– Look after yourself

– Get creative

– Talk about it

All these things have been seen as helping people with anger issues. If you believe someone you know or yourself has Anger Issues let someone know because it’s better to sort it out then just leave it. Also, there is no known cause for this particular illness. Like most mental illnesses there is no found medicine that will get rid of it but the few tips above should help.

I know this is a really short one that could be longer, but as always I’m open to questions so just email me or let me know in the comments. 

Tomorrow I’m going to see One Direction (cue mad screaming and lyrics to ‘You and I’) so I will not upload but I will upload next week.

Thank you for reading and I’ll see you soon,

Rachel xx

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Email Me: rachelkate01@yahoo.co.uk

Last Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/best-friend-tag/

Website I used: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/Pages/controlling-anger.aspx

Childline: http://www.childline.org.uk/Pages/Home.aspx

Cambridge Dictionary: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/

Mental Health

Good afternoon, Munchkins! Another help/advice blog post for you today, and this is something I’ve wanted to cover ever since I started this blog all those months ago. 

Mental Health is a range of illnesses but the most well-known are Depression, ADHD, Bipolar, OCD and Anxiety. I have suffered from some of these and it is said that one in three people will suffer from Depression or a Panic Attack I think it is and that’s quite a lot.

Last year I suffered from Depression when my Great-Nan died and that whole 3 month period is kind of a blur and a sort of how-did-I-do-it kind of thing. I know for some people that amount of time will seem like nothing and to others for my age (I was 12 at the time) it will seem loads. At the time I don’t think it really occurred how serious Depression is or can get and it should be talked about more and it shouldn’t just be hidden in the corner. Thinking about it, it should be the same for all Mental Illnesses.

At the moment I suffer from Bipolar and I know you’re going to say ‘Oh, it’s just hormones’. Let me tell you, it happens all times of the month and my mood swings are just extreme. It’s not extreme to the fact that one minute I will be trying to hang myself the next I’m bouncing up and down for no particular reason, but people are starting to notice and it can change like that. Just imagine I clicked my fingers there! Also, I suffer with mild OCD and I have mini ‘OCD Attacks’ as I call them. It’s basically if something in my OCD ‘plan’ doesn’t go right I have mini Panic Attacks. It doesn’t feel extreme or bad enough to be called a Panic Attack because I know people who have them really badly and I wouldn’t want to downgrade it to my version. 

All the different types of Mental Disorders (I did look this up, there are way more than I initially expected):

– Anxiety Disorders (OCD, PTSD etc.) (PTSD is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and OCD is Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)

– Mood Disorders (Depression, Mania and Bipolar)

– Psychotic Disorders (Schizophrenia)

– Eating Disorders (Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder)

– Impulse Control and Addiction Disorders (Addiction to drugs, impulse to start fires etc)

– Personality Disorders (Antisocial Personality Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder and Paranoid Personality Disorder)

(The next few are less common)

– Dissociative Disorder (Dissociative Identity Disorder (‘Split Personality Disorder’))

– Factitious Disorders (in which people will make themselves (physically or mentally) have symptoms to put themselves in the role of a patient or a person needing help)

– Sexual and Gender Disorders (Sexual Dysfunction, Gender Identity Disorder, Paraphilias)

– Somatoform Disorders (these individuals experience physical symptoms of an illness though a doctor can’t find a medical cause for them)

– Tic Disorders (Tourette’s Syndrome)

Other Mental Illnesses include things like Dementia and Alzheimers. 

All of these will need some sort of medical involvement or medicine. Recently my Bipolar has calmed down but I had no help during my Depression and my OCD isn’t so bad I actually need help. For my Bipolar I try to take herbal remedies you can buy off the shelf because I don’t want loads of artificial stuff getting in the way of other things I want to be able to do. My Bipolar was really bad after first getting over Depression but I don’t know whether that’s normal. I am a walking disaster really. Basically, if I stick to what I know or what I think will be OK, I’ll be fine. I guess you could say I’m a ticking time bomb, but you do get used to it over time.

There are stories of people getting over their Mental Illness which is a lot harder than a Physical Illness, I personally think anyway, and it is really inspiring. If you have suspected Tourette’s Syndrome or Dementia which is a bit more serious, then please go to the doctor. I’m so sorry I can’t help you personally with that, but seeing a doctor doesn’t make you weird or strange in anyway, it just makes sure you get the answers you need. 

There are Mental Illnesses like Depression which have gotten so bad people have taken there own life, but if you feel like you’re getting to that stage please go see a counsellor or tell someone because it is not going to go away if your contemplating suicide every night. I was never that bad, but looking back I think it was worse than what I thought of it at the time. 

Many people have got over Mental Illnesses though, like: 

– Zoe Sugg (YouTube Zoella, Panic Attacks and Anxiety)

– King George III

– Charles Dickens (writer, Depression)

– Abraham Lincoln (16th President, Suicidal Depression)

– Napoleon Bonaparte

– Adam Ant 

– Kurt Cobain (Musician, ADHD)

– Stephan Fry

– Paul Gascoigne 

– Florence Nightingale (Nurse, Bipolar)

– Sinead O’Connor

– Ozzy Osbourne 

– Jim Carrey (actor, Manic Depression)

– Robin Williams (actor, Manic Depression)

 

I know I’ve just made myself sound terrible at this, but if you have got any worries on this matter then please let me know my email or if you have any other advice for people write it in the comments because I think it would be nice if we could all help each other and not just myself. Also, I hope knowing that a whole range of celebrities have gone through it and still going should boost your confidence to try and get over it yourself if that’s what you’re going through at the moment. 

I can honestly say that if you really believe it and want to, you can get over it. I’m not saying it’ll happen overnight, but overtime you will notice improvements. This time last year, I never thought I’d be able to go to an Under-18’s Club, meet celebrites, set up my own blog etc. I started this blog to build confidence and ‘start again’ as it were. 

I know I haven’t said a lot but there’s so much to cover. If you would like me to cover a certain one then just let me know and I will get to it. Also, I feel like I haven’t given it the right amount of justice it deserves so I might do it anyway. 

Thank for reading and I’ll see you soon,

Rachel xx

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Email Me: rachelkate01@yahoo.co.uk

Last Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/05/24/how-to-wear-high-heels/

Website I used: http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/mental-health-types-illness

Zoella video (Panic Attacks and Anxiety): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-iNOFD27G4

Living With Bipolar Disorder: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Ne6GBqVDLU

The Truth about Depression (BBC Documentary): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F5YubjEqbZ8

Self-Harm

Good evening Munchkins. Like last week with the Teen Pregnancy blog post it’s another serious one so please don’t say anything offensive to anyone, I’d much rather you send it to me than anyone else. 

It’s estimated that 10% of young people may self-harm in some way and although it doesn’t sound much it affects a lot of people if you don’t start stereotyping and just look for some signs. This time last year I began going through depression and self-harmed but I don’t now, just incase you get worried! 90% of people taken to A&E due to self-harm are due to a suspected overdose though most just stereotype it as cutting or burning yourself. It is said that girls are more likely to harm themselves than boys, but that’s only because boys are more likely to get angry and punch a wall or something. I know people who have burnt themselves and cut themselves with a range of things but overdoses are something I haven’t yet known someone to do. 

As with my Bereavement blog post I will write down questions and answer them as best I can, but I’m not a proffesional at this sort of thing. If you have any other advice then you are more than welcome to suggest it below for those that need it. 

What is self-harm?

Self-harm is an act of depression or suicidal thoughts about yourself which causes you to harm yourself in some way. This can include cutting, burning, drug or alcohol overdose as previously mentioned but also overeating, smoking, pulling hair, picking skin and deliberate bruising. This should not be confused with accidental bruises and cuts (e.g falling over).

Who self-harms?

This is where stereotyping comes in. Most people believe it’s just people who are bullied or emos or teenagers as a whole. No, just no. I don’t know of any specific examples but I’m sure there’s some people who aren’t teenagers that self-harm and I wasn’t bullied and I’m not a stereotypical ’emo’. I don’t mean to offend anyone but an ’emo’ is basically someone who is related to having black hair, pale skin, likes screamo music and self-harms. Some people want to be emo and others hate being mistaken for being emo when they’re in fact not. Some people just do it because they don’t feel there place in the world and it doesn’t have to have a primary cause. Also, just because someone does it doesn’t mean they’re going to be putting it all over FaceBook or shouting it out. I’ve only told a certain number of people and my parents found out on there own. 

The difference between self-harm and self-injury.

I haven’t previously heard of self-injury until researching this topic for this blog but it is the act of cutting/burning/pulling out hair etc (deliberate ways to hurt yourself) and self-injury includes things like over/under-eating (long-term/short-term damage). Again, these two should not be confused. 

Recovering from self-harm.

I recovered over time with my depression and eventually just stopped thinking suicidal thoughts. However, I know this isn’t the case for everyone. I would try and take your mind off whatever makes you depressed and spend time with the people who make you happiest. If the reason you self-harm is due to friendship problems then join a club that interests you. I know you’re out there thinking ‘well, what about counselling?’. I know it seems the obvious but I didn’t have counselling and if you really think you need it or other’s around you think you do then that’s when you should go for it. 

Dealing with scars.

My scars are faint but still there so I worry about what to say to people in the future if they notice it but if you have quite prominent scars but look happier you will come across stronger. Also, the sun gets rid of scars so sun-bathing could help! Even if you do eventually get rid of the physical scars the mental scars will always be there but if you use it in a positive way like I try to do then you can’t go far wrong. Everything that challenges you in life should make you come out of the end of it stronger because what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. As cheesy as it is it’s true.

Those are all the pointers that I can give you but if you have any questions or queries then I am always here to talk, just email me and I will get back to you (links are below). I know this is going to come across wrong but I really like talking about things like this because it shows how far I’ve come and it is possible to come out of a place like this. Something that still upsets me though is that I’ve recovered and I’m fine but loads of my friends are still in that place and I’m just here like ‘Oh, well I haven’t had suicidal thoughts for months now’. I really do want to help you because I see how it’s affected the people around me and I know what it feels like to be in that place. 

Thank you for reading and I’ll see you next week,

Rachel xx

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Email Me: rachelkate01@yahoo.co.uk

Last Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/05/17/what-to-wear-on-a-date/

Teen Pregnancy Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/05/10/teen-pregnancy/

Don’t Give Up Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/04/14/dont-give-up/

Bereavement Blog: https://rachelkate01.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/bereavement/

Childline: http://www.childline.org.uk/Pages/Home.aspx

Self-Harm website I used: http://selfharm.co.uk/get/facts/what_is_self-harm

Self Harm Q&A (Sprinkle of Glitter) video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22_kotDLxdY