Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness week this year runs from the 13th to 19th May. It is important we are aware of mental health and mental health issues. Being aware is key if we are to have and lead healthy lives. Everything that begins to challenge our very existence has something to do with mental health.

Good mental health allows us to think, feel and react in positive and productive ways. Poor mental health means how we think, feel or react to situations will become difficult, in certain cases impossible. Mental health issues will affect 1:4 each year with problems ranging from depression and anxiety to Bipolar Disorder.

Body image is also part of mental health week and although we may see body image as an individual issue, we’re not always aware it is a mental health problem. Body image issues affect 91% of women and although it usually starts in adolescence when our bodies begin to change, it can affect all of us at any age. A life changing reaction can change the way we think about ourselves.

It is important we understand why body image impacts the way we feel. It has everything to do with how we feel about ourselves, our upbringing: our environment is very much a breeding ground for feeling bad about ourselves. What we hear and see growing up is the catalyst for how we become.

If our parents or family struggle with insecurities, we will struggle also… not necessarily with the same issues, but we will unconsciously start to hone-in on the things we see as an issue. But mental health is something we need to understand fully. It’s a spectrum, it’s important we understand and decide for ourselves if we’re on that spectrum.

Mental Health is something we can get better from. Through a combination of self-care, support and treatment, finding what’s right for us, can make us better.

14 May, 2019

4 thoughts on “Mental Health Awareness Week

  1. Knowing is half the battle. This has been one of many important things I have come to realise over the years. My parents never addressed their own mental health issues, so it’s no wonder that I fought against treatment myself.

    They always acted like asking for help was one of the 7 Deadly Sins, there was such a stigma about being considered crazy and there still is, even as much as people try to claim that things have changed.

    People only think of the worst case scenarios when you mention mental health issues like schizophrenia or DID, formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder. It’s a miracle that I didn’t end up with the last one, considering the amount of trauma that I went through as a child.

    Yes, mental health issues are something we can better from, but it requires doing things that many of us don’t like to do like going to therapy and taking meds regularly.

    I have watched so many people lose their minds and behave irrationally which usually leads to forced stays in a mental hospital, or criminal charges which is even worse.

    I don’t particularly enjoy sharing my issues with just anyone, but when you have things like PTSD, I feel obligated to warn them not to startle me from behind so they won’t get hurt.

    It would be fantastic if I could just be normal like everyone else, but I didn’t have that luxury as a child, so I have to accept I am anything but.

    It would be nice to not get treated like a circus freak for a change, when I happen to mention that I have those issues.

    1. Yes, one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to mental health. And half the battle is knowing you have mental health issues.

      I have to ask, what is normal? Normal is different to different people. What’s considered normal for one person, is not normal to another.

      What’s important is that we begin to understand our mental health issues, understand that we need help and work hard on ourselves so that we begin to feel better.

      But the more we talk about mental health the less stigma there is attached to it. I think society as a whole is doing better.

      The other problem we have is often the company we keep. It’s important we have people around us support us unconditionally, who want us to get better, those that fight for us and who will not stand in judgment.

      Keep up with the good work Randy. You’ve come a long way. We don’t always see that progress in ourselves, but it doesn’t mean the progress isn’t there.

  2. It is through your blog and others posts that the stigma around mental health will slowly be eroded.

    Ten years ago no one ever thought mental health would be openly discussed in the media and by high profile celebrities, but slowly attitudes have changed and thankfully there seems to be a real impetus behind this now.

    1. Thanks. Yes, innately even as a child I always knew how important it was to talk about things, brought about through a disability that was kept secret from me.

      It’s the emotional struggles that make it even more important. But I believe mental health is coming into its own. Nine years ago when I started my blog there wasn’t much out there in terms of mental health.

      But in the last 4 to 5 years more people are coming out about mental health. I am proud to say my blog contributes to mental health wellness also.

      The more we all talk about what we deal with the easier it will be to remove the stigma, not just around mental health, but other issues too.

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