As if we’re onto day six of Mental Health Awareness Week! Today, I’ll be collaborating with the Design Parlour and Etsy UK to bring to you the second print we have designed and are selling on the Design Parlour’s Etsy store. I also thought I’d take inspiration from the print and chat about all the things that you can do to feel less alone…

Asking for help:

I think that the hardest steps in getting help and support are recognising you need it, deciding who to seek it from, and then actually asking for it! I mean, people talk about ‘admitting you need help’ as though you’re finally succumbing to some sort of weakness. And this is also where pride comes into it; because asking for help is recognising that you can’t do something alone and accepting that you need someone else to make it happen. But, I believe, that doing these things – seeing that you need it and asking for help – can be a huge illustration of bravery and strength because you’re having to fight all of the notions as to why you shouldn’t.

My fear of telling someone about my mental health (particularly the hallucinations) was mostly due to the panic that I had worked up my own little scenario in my head. I was convinced that telling someone I was hearing voices and considering suicide, would result in my being hauled from my home by people in white jackets who would lock me up in the local psychiatric hospital and force medication down my throat – when they weren’t giving me electro-shock therapy! My belief was conditioned in part by the terribly stigmatised stories of mental health in the media back then and in part by the horror stories I’d heard about our local psychiatric services.

I like to think that I have no regrets in my life. That there are instances where I could have done something differently, but I recognise that if I had, I wouldn’t be where/who I am today (and I’m kind of happy with that person/life). But, if there was something I’ve done that I wouldn’t recommend to anyone else, it would be that I didn’t ask for help sooner. The fact that I didn’t tell anyone about the hallucinations for ten days and that I only eventually told someone because I had made a suicide attempt and was sectioned under the 1983 Mental Health Act (and had the mindset that it couldn’t get any worse), is something I wouldn’t suggest anyone else do! 

When you’ve recognised you need help, it can then become important who you ask for it. I had built up a whole host of arguments and reasons (that weren’t at all based on fact!) why I couldn’t tell particular people. And to be honest, to this day; there are still things that I would only tell my support worker or which I would only say to my Mum, or my best-friends. So, whilst it’s essential that you recognise you need help, it is equally important that you turn to someone you trust and that you do so, without any hugely exaggerated expectations or unfair assumptions that might set you up to feel disappointed and let-down.

So, with everything in mind, here are a few UK helplines and resources:

In an emergency always dial: 999

NHS Non-Emergency: 111

To find your local NHS mental health helpline: Mental Health Helpline for Urgent Help - NHS (www.nhs.uk)

British Red Cross Support Line: 0808 196 3651

Cruse Bereavement Support: 0808 808 1677

For information on seeking help and support from your GP: How to talk to your GP about your mental health | Mental Health Foundation

Samaritans: 116 123 or jo@samaritans.org

Papyrus (for under 35’s): 0800 068 41 41 or pat@papyrus-uk.org

C.A.L.M: 0800 58 58 58

For information on seeking help and support for children and young people: Information for young people – Find support for mental health - Mind

The Silver Line (for older people): 0800 470 8090



Navigating Loneliness by Cheryl Rickman: £7.85

How To Listen So Men Will Talk by Tom Chapman: £8.39

Lonely Less by Gill Hasson: £7.69

Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig: £4.00

Making Sense of Psychiatric Diagnosis by Ashley Peterson: £5.68

A Mindfulness Guide for Survival by Ruby Wax: £7.49

Happy by Fearne Cotton: £5.91

High Tide Low Tide by Martin Baker and Fran Houston: £9.99




Just didn't know what to do and how to deal with it

Even now deep down I'm still livid

To think I used to blame me

I wonder what I did to you to make you hate me

Read All About It – Emeli Sande and Professor Green


I don't wanna be someone who walks away so easily

I'm here to stay and make the difference that I can make

Our differences, they do a lot to teach us how to use

The tools and gifts we got

I Won’t Give Up – Jason Mraz


Funny, you're the broken one

But I'm the only one who needed saving

Stay – Rihanna ft. Mikky Ekko


Oh, and the award for the best liar goes to you

(Goes to you)

For making me believe that you could be faithful to me

Take A Bow – Rihanna


From a distance my choice is simple

From a distance I can entertain

So, you can see me

I put make-up on my face

But there's no way you can feel it

From so far away

Clown – Emeli Sande

Helpful Purchases:

Mental Health Affirmation Cards: £20.33

The Check In Journal: £24.00

Positivity Pebbles: £10.00

The Morning Mindset Mug: £10.95

Recovery Bracelet: £8.00

Self-Care Journal: £23.23

Crisis Card: £1.75

Anxiety Awareness Badge: £5.00

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