• Talking about Mental Health

    Today I was reminded that I made a pledge a month ago with Time to Change, to help change the stigma about mental health. I pledged to talk about my experience more. So here’s a blog I read today, ‘Depression Does not define you’,  followed by my response to that.

    …”Last week was Depression Awareness Week and to raise awareness myself I’ve decided to write a blog post about it. It shouldn’t just be one week that everyone talks about depression it should be every day because if we talk about mental health a lot more we can tackle the stigma in a more effective way. People choose not to talk about depression because of the lack of understanding and compassion in society today. Depression doesn’t define who you are as a person.

    They ask “Are you okay?” and the answer is always “I’m fine” because you don’t want everyone to think that you’re weak.

    So imagine this and put yourself in someone suffering from depression’s shoes.”More

    It is really helpful to hear from others and how well it matches my experience. I went through a terrible time and only asked for help when I had broke down. I wish I could have spoken more about how I was feeling and what I was thinking at the time. I felt so guilty and ashamed of myself, and weak. We need to talk every day, everywhere about these commonplace experiences that so many of us share.
    I made a Time To Change pledge a month ago, and have deliberately introduced my mental health into conversations with family and friends so as to take this terrible taboo away.
    And I am strong, getting stronger. I am so surprised by the response from people- who have had the same depression, anxiety, as I had!
    It’s a bit like the Buddha’s story of the mustard seed, he sent a mother to seek a seed from one house that has never had a death. She never finds one. It helps her to realise and accept her baby has died. The more people I talk to, even taxi drivers and folk I don’t know, the better I understand how we all suffer in similar ways and it is definitely Time To Change!

    Advice from the blog above and myself:

    Please don’t suffer in silence.Time to Change



Born in 1958 and brought up in Blantyre in a family of seven. Moved to Glasgow in 1976 and stayed until 2012. Then I moved back to Hamilton where I had attended secondary school, for 4 years. Home is now Glasgow, again, I am a weegie through 'n through. I have two daughters, and four granddaughters who all light up my life. My experience of working with poetry, writing, reading and so on is from my childhood. One of my poems was published in a school magazine when I was 12. I am now trying to publish my first grown-up booklet of poems within the next year or so. I trained and studied to become a librarian from 1977. It was the one job I wanted since reading in Hamilton Townhouse Library in the early 1970's!I watched the staff and thought, I'd like to work here... Bibliotherapy came into my life in 2007, at Glasgow Women's Library.


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