Saturday, 20 July 2019

WHY IT’S ALWAYS GOOD TO HAVE MORE THAN ONE FAMILY



So, the other night I went to the Birthday party (with live music from We Steal Flyers) of my best-friend (Lauren)’s Mum (Julie) and a lot about the night inspired this blog post.

The Dewars
Since our regular nights out in 2011, Lauren and I have always said her family (namely her Mum, Dad, and Brother) are like a second family because I was constantly at their house and they treat me like a second Daughter! We were all always in Lauren’s room or the Kitchen, drinking vodka and laughing at YouTube fail videos and then there were the very few nights in when we’d watch Mock The Week, drink wine, and play with the dogs!

Wednesday, 17 July 2019

ALL THINGS TRAVEL & MENTAL HEALTH | IN COLLABORATION WITH LONDON NORTH EASTERN RAILWAY | AD



The Post Inspiration:
A little while ago, I was travelling to London when a cabinet above the sink in the train bathroom swung open and hit me on the head. As an apology, London North Eastern Railway (LNER) issued me with complimentary first-class tickets to any destination on their route! When I got talking to the Communications department though, and they heard about I’m NOT Disordered, we agreed to turn it into a collaboration, so the bestie and I decided to go to York for the day!

It was actually when we were waiting to come home though that we had the conversation which – along with the actual trip - has inspired this blog post. There were no tables outside the pub in York train station so we ended up sitting on a table with a man (Tony) and lady (Nikki). It turned out that Tony worked for Network Rail, so we got talking about my LNER collaboration and the benefits travelling has on your mental health…

Benefits of travelling: 

For a lot of people with a mental health illness, I think that there’s a level of expectation in society that if you behave in a particular way then that must mean you have this diagnosis or if you do that then you must have that diagnosis. This can be especially exacerbated when surrounded by people you know; not just friends but professionals too - there can be pressure in appointments when you feel that you need to seem more well than you feel so as to avoid particular responses from professionals. This pressure from all these different places can obviously become overwhelming and can result in a huge amount of stress which could be slightly alleviated by travelling somewhere different to be surrounded by people who don’t know you… or your mental state! When I temporarily moved down South (where I was born) it felt like a fresh start because was there no one feeling that people were thinking ‘it’s her again.’ I could start new relationships and determine just how much of my mental illness they saw.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

“I DIDN’T PRESCRIBE THEM; YOU DID!” | A DISCUSSION ABOUT PSYCHIATRIC MEDICATION



I remember being discharged from the Psychiatric Hospital after my first admission in 2009 and it felt like everyone thought I was better now, and I would never try to kill myself again. Of course, I knew that wasn’t the case; because I could feel that darkness inside of me and I knew it wasn’t going anywhere any time soon. So, when I attempted suicide again and refused the medical treatment for it, I wasn’t really surprised. What did surprise me, though, was when the entire Mental Health Act assessment team came to my Mum’s house to section me!

My Mum had tried to convince me to go to A&E for the antidote to the paracetamol overdose, but I’d refused, and she’d called the Crisis Team. I just remember professionals sat around the living room asking me questions and then I went to my bedroom and the next thing I knew the Psychiatrist from my first admission was there and telling me that he was going to sign the section papers. I remember him sitting in my very pink bedroom and saying; “I think it’s time we start some medication for you at my Hospital.” I joked that it wasn’t ‘his’ Hospital and he led the way downstairs for me to watch the papers be signed and eight Police officers filed in to take me to their van to go to A&E for the medical treatment first. When we got there, there were four support workers from the local Psychiatric Hospital ready to make sure I had the treatment (a drip that takes over twenty hours to administer) and right from the offset I was medicated! I tried to run from A&E and was given a sedative injection and as soon as I’d woken up after it, I was trying to tear the drip out and was given another. I think it took about five injections for me to complete the treatment and be transferred to the Psychiatric Hospital to begin an anti-psychotic medication.

Saturday, 6 July 2019

WHEN DO YOU NEED TO ‘GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER’?




The other day, at my Digital Marketing internship with Docere and SS Healthfoods, I was talking to one of the Marketing Executives about my long-term goals and all things Universities and careers. It made me think about how long it has taken for me to finally have those dreams/goals, and then I started to consider why I felt there should have been an age for me to have all these things decided. 


I don’t remember even thinking about a ‘dream job’ when I was younger until Middle School when a teacher told my Mum that she thought I’d end up being a Journalist (do you think ‘Blogger’ is close?) but I never really held onto that so much. When I came to the point of choosing my GCSE subjects, I didn’t really have a career in mind then either; I just chose the ones I was interested in – History, Media Studies, and Textiles. Then, when I was excluded from High School, I met a Lawyer specializing in Education and that became my goal – to be like her. I wanted to help children avoid experiencing everything that I had, when I was at School. 


So, at A Level, I took Law, Philosophy, and History, and with the abuse having ‘finished’ months before Sixth Form started, I threw myself into my schoolwork in a desperate bid to block out the memories of it. I also started working at my local Primark store in Newcastle city center but in the end, my mental health deteriorated to the point where there was no blocking anything out and I missed all of my final exams and quit my job because I attempted suicide. Even though I had an offer to study Law at Newcastle University, being sectioned under the Mental Health Act, I instantly didn’t want to work in anything to do with the law and after two weeks in a psychiatric hospital I decided to pursue my other interest; fashion and enrolled on a Summer course. Before I had a chance to attend the induction session, I was sectioned again. After my second longest admission in October 2009 to February 2010, I became interested in the notion of helping others and attempted to enroll on a childcare course but when my DBS came back with notes of my interactions with Police (occasions when I’d been sectioned or had ran away from Hospital), I was denied access to the course. In the end, I developed the belief that if I couldn’t look after myself then I shouldn’t attempt to look after anyone else.

Thursday, 27 June 2019

THE TEN BIGGEST INSULTS IN MENTAL HEALTH


In my previous post, I talked about acceptance in connection with hallucinations and something I said has inspired this post: ‘…people reading this who have never hallucinated might not understand…’ It’s quite a common belief in mental health service users; that those on the ‘outside’ looking in will never understand what they are going through. I think that in fairness, those on the ‘inside’ might never understand what it is like for the people looking in. I’m not going to lie, it’s taken me a long time to be able to see it from both sides because I was so caught up in what was happening to me that when it/I was misunderstood, I’d get angry and defensive. Natural though, right? Like, anyone would be like that if they felt insulted… no matter what the situation.

I really hope that this post does a couple of things: I hope that it doesn’t just tell ‘outsiders’ what not to say but that it also tells them why they might be met with a certain reaction when they do say these things; because I don’t believe they always mean to be offensive. I also hope that it offers some assurance to the ‘insiders’ that they aren’t the only ones these things are being said to, and that they aren’t the only ones to feel insulted by them.



1.      “Shake it off”