Hey all, so I wanted to write something what is super close to my heart my own battle with mental health. This is going to be a long post so grab your cuppa or coffee and your biscuits!
So let’s begin.
Back in 2009. 2 weeks before starting secondary school my mum died suddenly. I was faced with starting “big school” and coping to come to terms with I didn’t have a mum anymore. That was a massive shock to my system. Back then there wasn’t much help with counselling. But I did get some counselling. I had a hour a week with a lady. We made a memory box and just coloured in. That finished after a bit.
I didn’t really enjoy school that much. I’ll be totally honest. Bullying and fake friends. They’d talk to you sweetly then when you was gone they’d talk about you. I started to feel Social isolation by the time I was 13. I begged my gran to let me stay at home because I just didn’t feel safe at school. I got sent to CAMHS. They blamed my hormones and sent be back to doctors and out me on tablets what would help my periods. I kept feeling sad and just an empty feeling. So I got sent back to camhs and they sent me back to doctors saying I was fine. I felt more at risk at school. My home was my safe place I found.
This is where I wish mental illness was taught in schools back then because I never had any awareness back then. I didn’t know anything about mental health. This is why I’m so supportive of bring mental health sessions into schools just like sex education. Because that’s the time where your brain is developing basically.
I will fight to get mental health awareness into schools and public places as this needs to be talked about.
To think If I got the help I needed from the correct services and if I got a diagnosis back then I could be living a steady life without no mentally and physically pain due to having how many invisible mental illnesses. But I can’t think like that. I think positively from now on.
So, since year 7 till year 9 I was socially isolated. I didn’t have many friends. I was in my dark hole every single day. I started having my intrusive thoughts.
Not once did I get “are you okay Shannon?!”, I just got the added stress from my Nan being taken to court because the education welfare didn’t want to listen to my Nan.
I was missed from the mental health team at a young age. I was missed from the school support. I was missed by CAMHS! I was missed from a lot of services and people.
Back then I didn’t have any confidence to speak out as I was scared I was going to be laughed at. I didn’t know what to do.
Fast forward 5 years. I’ve had my relapses. I’ve had my bad days. I’ve had my good days. I’m confident to speak about my illness. I want to support other people not just me.
I was scared to speak out that I had an mental illness but now it’s just like any illness you know? I don’t feel ashamed of having my bad days anymore. I’m stronger than my illness and stigma.
The stigma what is attached to mental illness is awful. I use to be afraid to get my medication as the looks I got the first time getting my medication by an elderly couple.
But so what? I need that medication to help me. Just like any medication for any illness.
But I got listened to finally by a family doctor. He started the ball rolling with doctors and listened and gave me the right medication! He listened to me and let me talk to him.
I will fight every single day against stigma and raising awareness for a illness what messes with your life and your daily living.
I’m not ashamed to admit I used substance to block out my thoughts. I’m not ashamed to say I needed help. I’m not ashamed to say I have a mental illness. I’m not ashamed to say I have to take medication daily to help my mental illness as if I didn’t I wouldn’t be able to live like I use to be.
Talking saved my life. I know it’s so hard for people to tell other people their mental health experiences. Talking save lives. Talking helps bring the awareness out to young people and elderly people. Talking most importantly stamps out stigma!
You are loved. You are worth the fight. You are more than your illnesses, you can fight this I believe in you. You are flawless. You are fabulous.
All the best my loves, Love from Shannon Diana xx
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