Posted in mental health

Hearts Of Hope – World Mental Health Day

It’s World Mental Health Day 10th October

So I decided I wanted to organise another little project to tie in with this so I came up with ” Hearts Of Hope”

Seen as my last project with the notes on the bridge was “notes of hope” and my group which is still campaigning against the council who removed them has recently been renamed “Midlands Messages Of Hope” I wanted something that would tie in with this.

I came up with the idea of making similar notes to those on the bridge but with more of a general “mental health awareness” feel rather than the suicide prevention aim of the notes for the bridge and hanging them all around the rails that go around the entrance to my local park in the aim of mental health awareness, creating conversation around mental health and also notes that will tackle mental health stigma.

To my amazement after the recent awfulness and fight with Worcestershire county council removing my notes of hope from the bridge and what has turned in to a campaign in fight to rehang them I was completely shocked when within 2 hours I had a response from solihull council regarding the hearts if hope project, permission and support! It was pretty amazing considering recent events and so I will be aiming to do this project on 7th October to tie in to World Mental health day.

The aim is to hang them, people to read them, create conversation about mental health but to also attach them in a way so that they are removable.

People with a mental health issue and those who know someone with a mental health issue will be encouraged to take a heart and keep it or pass it on. Hopefully after a week all of the hearts with have gone to hands that need hope ♡♡

You can join the group to support me here : https://www.facebook.com/groups/278903099335095/


Here’s to filling hearts with hope ♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡♡

Posted in mental health

World Suicide Prevention Day – Understanding Suicide.

World Suicide Prevention Day – Monday 10th September.

Suicide holds a lot of stigma. People don’t like talking about it. I talk here about the feelings that go behind suicide and my own personal experiences in the aim of suicide awareness.

A simple message can save a life.

I am proof of this. Talk. Reach Out. End The Stigma.

Please take 10 minutes to watch this, to understand why suicide isn’t “a cowards way out”, it’s not “attention seeking” and why something as simple as a message really can save someone’s life.

Never forget the importance of allowing someone to talk to you. For letting them know you are there.

Remember to send a message, a text, pop round, ask how they are feeling. Don’t be scared to ask. Suicide lives in silence. Most will be glad you asked, glad you care enough to have taken that time to ask about them.

It really can be the smallest of things that make a big difference. sometimes all it takes is a message.

Posted in mental health

Self harm – complex and difficult to understand – this is my own experience.

Self Harm – It can be difficult to understand both as someone going through it and someone trying to help.

My experiences with self harm and advice from my personal perspective.

I recently gave an interview on the BBC Victoria Derbyshire show about the recent self harm statistics in teenage girls and wanted to expand a little on my own experiences.

Posted in mental health

Dear mental health professionals, yours sincerely – mental health patients everywhere.

If I could only raise awareness and campaign on one area of mental health it would be NHS services.

So many are being failed and spoken to in way which should never happen and I feel it’s an area that goes largely unoticed.

This is my letter to mental health professionals, what we want you to know. From mental health patients everywhere.

Posted in mental health

Self Harm And Stigma.

Katie houghton - self harm awareness - mental health
Self harm – BBC News – Katie Houghton

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-45345696

Self harm is misunderstood and often thought of as attention seeking behaviour. This couldn’t be further from the truth. People that self harm will mostly go to great lengths to hide it.

In a way, I was lucky that I learned to control it but this took many many many years and a distinct lack of help – including being told by a psychiatrist on an inpatient ward that it was “child’s play”, “didn’t I like that sort of attention?” ” you haven’t actually tried to kill yourself have you?” and I pretty much dealt with it alone.

It holds a lot of stigmas and people often don’t know how to react to it but the fact is the statistics are on the rise and young people are getting younger…

Once started it’s something that difficult to stop and very easily becomes an ingrained and “go to” coping mechanism.

My advice to anyone struggling is to speak to someone – whoever that may be – someone you trust, a helpline- anyone that will allow you to speak without judgment.
This is a very hard thing to do but it’s a brave and vital step to getting the help you need and the longer it lives in secrecy the harder things can become. It can be stopped. I didn’t think it could after years of not getting any real support for it, but you can come through it ♡

To any parents or carers I would say that just listening is so important, don’t judge, don’t assume they are trying to end their lives – while the self harming may be a way of expressing that this is how they feel the action of self harm itself doesn’t necessarily mean suicidal intent – it does mean there are overwhelming emotions and trying to get to the bottom of those is important and so talking, listening , and kindness are so important. Trying to get the person just to stop and focussing all the energy around that has the danger of pushing them away and making them less open and so supporting them emotionally and getting relevant help are vital.

Don’t judge people who self harm. Don’t assume their reasons for doing it. Listen. Be kind. It’s a very difficult time and words are important.

I hope that schools take note of the new statistics and mental health becomes spoken about it schools as part of a curriculum. Mental health issues are ever growing and children are getting younger.
I hope that children will be given the relevant knowledge and understanding to understand what is going on with themselves and also their peers!

Samaritans : 116 123

#selfharm #endthestigma #mentalhealth

Posted in mental health

Musketts Way Bridge – Notes Of Hope

Notes of hope were attached to a bridge where people have ended their lives – Worcestershire County Council tore them down three days later flagged as a “distraction to motorists”

I aim to prove that this project has been proven to save lives other areas of the country with no council backlash. People helping people is important. The smallest things can make the biggest difference!

I started the #muskettswaybridgehope project which the aim to attach “notes of hope” to a bridge in Redditch where people have ended their lives.

This particular bridge has been campaigned over for years for safety measures to be made to the structure of the bridge, including by a former mayor but nothing has ever been done about it.

This project wouldn’t cost the council a penny and also is very personal, each note written from the heart of someone who has felt suicidal or has dealt with mental illness to the heart of someone who may be feeling similar. This has been proven to work in other areas of the country, in one area alone having saved eight lives in a short period. All have had support from their local are yet the council for this bridge ripped them down within three days.

Continue reading “Musketts Way Bridge – Notes Of Hope”

Posted in mental health

The OTHER TRUTH about having a baby – Mental Health

Prenantal postnatal depression - mental health and new baby
Prenatal and postnatal depression often lie in silence through fear of being judged.

Becoming a parent is the most magical time of someone’s life………

…..Or is it?

What about those with prenatal and post natal depression? What about those that have had a traumatic birth? Why are we programmed in to this state of mind that it should be a certain way and feel ultimate guilt if it’s not?

As parents we are almost brainwashed in to thinking we should enjoy every waking second of it. From pregnancy to even the labour….We’ve all heard SOMEONE say “I really enjoyed labour it was magical!” …. Magical was far from my own experience of labour. I would be more inclined to use the words “Traumatic” and “Horrific” for the way that mine panned out. I will also say that for the pregnancy and the six months following my Daughters birth due to prenatal and post natal depression.

Continue reading “The OTHER TRUTH about having a baby – Mental Health”