Warning: Long, emotional and slightly cheesy post coming up. Scroll down now if you can’t handle it!
As some of you may, or may not know, I was diagnosed with depression earlier this year. Luckily, my battle with it seems to have been quite short in comparison to some and so I am extremely thankful for that. I wasn’t quite sure whether to air this to the public (being my facebook friends) however, after talking to my Mum this morning, we thought it’d be a good idea.
Firstly, I wanted to post to say thank you to all the people who have supported me throughout these few months. Without the support of my incredible parents Caroline Gillett and my line manage Carla, I certainly wouldn’t have made the first steps to get help or even recognise there was a problem. I also want to thank my lovely colleagues who welcomed me back to work like nothing had happened and ofcourse my friends, family and boyfriend who have formed such an amazing support system that have helped me get to where I am now.
The second reason I’m airing this ‘dirty laundry’ as it were, is because mental health seems to carry such stigma, it’s really hard to feel like you’re not on your own. It’s really hard not to see it as a weakness or a flaw in your personality. I’ve had some of my best friends in the world say: ‘I never thought it could happen to you’ or ‘I don’t understand, you’re always so strong’ which I totally understand however, mental health affects 1 in 4 people. That means in your office, workplace or day to day setting, the people sat next to you could be suffering in silence. I never want that to be the case.
Many people don’t ‘get’ depression or mental illness and again, that’s totally fine. That is kinda why I’m posting this too. I think the hardest thing when dealing with something like this is knowing how others might react and worrying that they will treat you differently or stop wanting to see you all together. This is rarely the case, and honestly, sometimes you just don’t know what to do. Some of my best friends openly told me that they’ve never experienced something like that before and so didn’t really know how to handle it. Again, that’s totally okay! I’m not saying I could counsel or offer professional advice but if you have friends and family who are suffering and you don’t ‘get it’, then please just ask me.
I’m in such a better place than I was a few months ago and feel like I should really give back to the community that have supported me so much. Don’t suffer in silence, please get yourself some help and if you do want to join my pursuit of battling the stigma, please support amazing charities such as Blurt Foundation and Mind. It’s really nothing to be ashamed of, just ‘shit happens’ from time to time!
Positive of the day: This post got 160 likes, 25 comments and a hell of a lot of positive messages! Go me 😀