Mental Health – The importance of speaking up

Mental Health

Today I will be writing about something which I feel is very important to speak about, which is the importance of speaking up about your mental health. The number of people being diagnosed with a mental illness is forever on the rise. It’s even been reported that primary school children are being prescribed antidepressants! Some people are still misinformed when it comes to knowing the basic ins and outs of these illnesses which is one of the main reasons we must speak up. To educate others.

Things won’t improve if we keep quiet. Remaining silent and keeping ourselves isolated with our issues definitely isn’t the answer. We need to face issues instead of hiding away from them.

Unfortunately, people take their own lives due to their mental health and the intense feelings of loneliness and worthlessness included in it. The truth is, mental illnesses kill and we must work hard to reduce the number of suicides caused by mental illnesses. I’d like everybody to know that there is always somebody out there who cares and who is rooting for you to get better. There is always hope and there is always something to fight for, which seems impossible to believe at the time!

Mental health is a taboo subject which is why we must keep speaking up in order to break the stigma and to, therefore, help more people. People tend to shy away from mental health and we must speak up about our issues in order to get help and support, but to also encourage other sufferers to do the same. Lots of people are fearful of speaking up due to the stigma of being labelled as ‘mental’ but I can reassure you that it isn’t like this at all! Plus, you’re not obligated to tell anybody about your struggles if you don’t wish to.

We must also inform people constantly that we are there for support and to be a shoulder to cry on. Nobody deserves to feel alone, everybody needs somebody and this can be achieved if we all stuck together and helped each other out.

Things to remember: 

  1. Speaking up about your mental health doesn’t make you a burden
  2. Speaking up about your mental health isn’t a form of attention seeking
  3. Speaking up about your mental health isn’t bad and it certainly won’t land you in any trouble
  4. People care and people have your best interests at heart, they want to help you to get to the light at the end of the tunnel
  5. Nobody is against you, despite what your head may be telling you

If we shy away from speaking up about our issues, we will be plagued with all of the nasty thoughts and emotions all by ourselves which will cause both frustration and aggravation. Telling somebody you trust is a huge, brave step and will allow you to relieve some of the tension and stress in your head. A problem shared is a problem halved and the chances are, you will feel tonnes better after telling another person how things are. You will be provided with support and understanding, aswell as coping mechanisms and emergency contact details you should use whilst in a crisis moment.

When I first sought help for my mental health (Anorexia, Depression and Anxiety) I firstly spoke to my Teacher about it because I trusted her and I was very anxious about going to the doctors as I had never really been for anything major before. Then after a phone call between my Mum and Teacher, I found myself sitting in the doctor’s waiting room and although it was terrifying at the time it was for the best and I encourage everybody to do the same. During this time, I realised that doctors aren’t scary and that they are actually very caring and understanding not the scary monsters I presumed.

Ten minutes in an appointment could potentially help to save your life. Speaking to somebody is the first, vital, step towards getting better. Please don’t be afraid, it’s just you taking little steps towards getting your life back.

I used to be very wary about speaking up about my mental health, but now I’ve come to realise that I have nothing to be ashamed of. Why should I be ashamed? My mental illnesses are NOT my fault, but people do choose to be ignorant and they’re the ones who should be ashamed, not me. I’m poorly and this is a journey in my life which I want to speak up about in order to raise awareness and to help other people to seek help too. If I could help even one person, that’d be incredible! I will not suffer alone just to please my illnesses. I will carry on taking each day as it comes and with a spring in my step, with the hopes of becoming stronger by the day and finally regaining my happiness, health and sparkle.

Speaking up is so important and I cannot stress just how helpful it is.

If you’re struggling, please seek help. If you know of anybody who is struggling, please offer them love, support and understanding aswell as encouraging them to seek professional help.

Lots of love and hugs,

Laur xx

Little Owl Farm

Animals

As an aspiring animal rehabilitation/orphanage worker I deem it necessary to gain experience working within the animal care industry, before and during my time at University. By doing this, I aim to gain newfound knowledge aswell as building my confidence up when it comes to approaching people and educating them on my animal knowledge and my understanding regarding unique and beautiful animal species that people may not know much about.

I also enjoy spending my time in the company of animals as they do not judge you and they have a caring and therapeutic side which works wonders for myself, and plenty of others too. When with animals, I gain confidence and I am able to refind my compassionate side which works wonders when I am struggling to find the motivation to care for myself properly.

One of my favourite placements has been at the Little Owl Farm, in Oldham which I strongly advise you all to visit. I am so glad I found it and my only regret is being unable to take my animal friends home with me!  You will have an amazingly wonderful time and will be in such a loving, tranquil environment in a beautifully scenic spot, alongside beautiful animals and wonderful people.

Prior to heading to this farm, I had never been to Oldham and it was challenging to travel such a distance on my own using public transport. Though, I managed well and I safely and happily arrived at the farm in freezing temperatures during my first visit back in February. I must add, Google maps is highly underrated and I imagine I wouldn’t have been as successful in my travels without it.

The farm is incredible, the owners made me feel like family and they hold a big place in my heart. I felt very welcomed and comfortable too which was lovely considering I am usually very anxious when it comes to new people. It is the same whenever I am at the farm and being there makes me happy and relaxed and as though I had been there all along.

Cindy, John and their young son Izaak have created this farm and a wonderful home for lots of gorgeous animals on their own and have worked incredibly hard to get to the point they’re at. They are wonderful and obviously very knowledgeable with regards to animals and their welfare. It is obvious that this family are passionate about what they do and they very clearly have a strong love for animals.

There are now regular events which take place there at the farm, including charity fundraising events and a range of fun activities going on for the Children during school holidays and birthdays.

This farm is going to be very successful, well, even more successful than it already is, and I can’t wait to see Cindy and John’s hard work paying off more and more, I can’t think of anybody who deserves it more than this lovely couple. Since opening over a year ago, the farm has already gained lots more visitors and has welcomed some new animal arrivals. Yay!

Go and visit, make new animal friends, get up and close to them, maybe even get your face painted or enjoy a bite to eat at the cafe!

Lots of love and hugs,

Laur x

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