Monday, 11 May 2015

Mental Health Awareness Week Day One


Mental health week starts today and is running until the 17th.  This is the perfect time to have that conversation with loved ones, friends and work colleagues. Let's raise awareness together and help beat the stigma surrounding it.
As you know I was due to attend the SAMH What Next event but could not make it along as my 2 children were unwell.  I was very kindly sent some notes from the event from the charity's public affairs assistant so I could share them with you.  Today I am sharing the stories of the people who spoke out on the day.

Aidan Stephen

* Aidan Stephen served in the army for seventeen years. During his service, he completed tours in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq. After being diagnosed with treatment resistant depression in 2006, he was given a medical discharge. Aidan has been helped through his recovery by organisations such as SAMH, the Thistle Foundation, Combat Stress and Poppy Scotland and is now a student, hoping to progress to Edinburgh College of Art in September.

Mark Docherty

* Mark Docherty works for SAMH’s experience Counts service. Here, he works on a one to one basis with his peers for a period of 6 months, where they share experiences and build relationships. Mark hopes to help the service users to get back to participating in their communities. Mark has been working on his own recovery for 10 years now, and has been dealing with chronic fatigue syndrome for about 15 years.

Morna

* Morna is 20 and is currently a student at Edinburgh Napier University. When she was 10, Morna was hospitalised as her mental health deteriorated. More recently, when she was 18, Morna again struggled with anxiety. She sought help from her GP, but feels let down by the service the NHS provided her with. Her mum helped her seek counselling from RAMH, who helped Morna with her recovery. Morna’s experience has made her want to promote positive recovery, and has sparked an interest in the education given in schools about mental health.

Chloe Kacedan

* Chloe Kacedan is 25 and comes from a small town in the Scottish borders near Lockerbie. At the age of 18, she was diagnosed with four separate mental illnesses. Chloe decided to speak out about her illnesses through a video on YouTube, using cue cards. She didn’t expect the reaction she got, but her video has now had over one million views and she has also appeared on STV news. She is now more determined than ever to raise awareness about mental illness and to try and help those who are struggling.

Alan Ainsley

* Alan is a supporter of SAMH. He has been coping with depression since his wife lost her battle with bone cancer in May 2013. Eventually, Alan sought self-admission to Royal Edinburgh Hospital. Getting the right diagnosis and treatment for his illness has given Alan a sense of relief, and he is continuing to take positive steps towards recovery. Alan wants to encourage people to be more open about mental health, and to seek help if
they think they may be experiencing a mental health problem.

34 comments:

  1. what a great post thanks for making me aware and best of luck

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  2. I think that it is important to work on awareness of mental health and also for people to know that great treatment can mean a full recovery

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    1. It certainly is. The more people understand the various conditions, educate themselves then the stigma will start to go too x

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  3. Definitely more help is required in the area of mental health, a good post raising awareness. I have family members who have required support and in our area it is sadly lacking.

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    1. It angers me when I hear people are not getting access to the help they need from the NHS and other services. The government need to look into this and fast. I hope your family members are ok x

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  4. Great post, raising awareness for mental health is so important x

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    1. hank you. Hopefully we can all make a difference x

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  5. This is a very important issue and it's great that you're raising awareness of it by writing about it.

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    1. Thanks. I think the more we talk about it the more people will listen and get the message x

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  6. I used to be a psychiatric nurse. I wish there wasn't such a stigma to mental illness as so many people suffer. Thanks for taking part to raise awareness on this week

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    1. I also wish the stigma did not exist. If this was an illness you could actually see it wouldnt happen so why cant they have the same respect for conditions you cant see x

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  7. This is such an important subject to bring awareness to - it needs to be talked about so much more.

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  8. It's so important to raise awareness of mental health issues. There are so many who suffer in silence.

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    1. Too many suffer in silence it is very sad :(

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  9. I'm so glad there is a week dedicated to openly speaking about this. Thank you for a great post.

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    1. So am I, it lets us get the message out there and speak up and be honest x

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  10. So many people suffer with this but it is important to know that you can come out the other side

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    1. I agree, letting people know they will come out the other side stronger. It gives them hope and encourages them to keep fighting x

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  11. I am glad more and more people are seemingly more comfortable with talking about issues like this, the more that do, the more recognition there will be x

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    1. I used to be scared to talk about it, now I am open and honest and if people dont like it tough! We need to get more people to speak out and get the help they need xxxx

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  12. Awareness about mental health is so important, especially when you are looking for support from friends and family, let alone society as a whole.

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    1. It is nice to see some local media cover Mental Health awareness week. More should cover it but then the media like to put a negative spin on it for some reason x

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  13. Well done for bringing awareness for such an important cause,

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    1. aww thanks and thank you for your continued support x

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  14. More awareness is certainly needed - a lovely post

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    1. thank you for you comment. i agree more awareness is needed x

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  15. It's so important for people to talk about this, and to get the right diagnosis. Anxiety affects many, but for some it is extreme.

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    1. It can be very extreme, yes mines got really bad but there are still people out there who suffer from it much worse and its worrying x

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  16. It is so important to raise awareness. Great post. Kaz x

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  17. Amazing and inspiring stories x

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