MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS

Charity, Donations, health, Mental health, poetry

Since my blog had been receiving a new high amount of traffic, I thought long and hard about what my next post could be. Ive decided to start a charity! Well to a point…

I have decided to place a section on my page to accept donations, and ALL will be going to local homeless shelters and mental health clinics. I would love to be swimming in money, and be able to do this myself, but unfortunately as a full time student its a little difficult. Any donations made will receive a receipt of where their donation has been made, because I can not fret this enough, this is not a scam. All proof of where the money is taken will be shown, including videos, pictures and blog posts.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and again thank you in advance for any donations made.


How to open up about your sexual assault

health, Mental health, Sexual assault

In my 20 years, there was no harder moment than when I decided to tell my parents about my rape. For almost a year I kept my thoughts and emotions to myself, refusing to tell a soul. I wish I could tell you that it was easy, the best thing I had ever done, but it wasn’t. To tell you the truth, I wasn’t in the best of states when I finally opened up. I was very drunk, so drunk that when my mother came to pick me up, I spilled the beans. The next morning I completely ignored her and went on with my day. I now know that was selfish, because my mother spent the whole day feeling the exact same why I had for the eight months prior. When I finally grew the courage to talk to her, I didn’t know how to react. I laughed and joked, almost as if I was hiding my emotions through humour.

I took it step by step.

I told her what had happened in the briefest way possible. And no matter how much she begged, I never told her his name. I still haven’t. After this, there was a release of emotions. I felt relieved and scared all at the same time. The worry of being defined by the ordeal was a regular occurrence, especially once more family members started to find out. I was worried people wouldn’t believe me, and sometimes I feel the same way now. But my mother was the first of many, because as time went on I could feel my strength grow, it grew easier to talk, to speak out. I stopped worrying about what people thought, I realized that those that didn’t believe me were not worth my precious time, and that the only person letting it define my personality, was me.

I do encourage people to speak out, but I know better than anyone it’s not that simple. But if you do decide to do so, I would recommend not getting completely pissed before hand…! Think about what your going to say, decide what you want someone to know, remember it’s okay not to share everything (but totally awesome if you decide to share it all, I couldnt). But my most important advice is not to feel pressured to speak out. At the end of the day it’s your story, and your freedom to share whenever you are ready, if ever.

If you would ever like to share your story, or speak out in the slightest of ways, please feel free to message me. I would rather have an email full of problems than for people to suffer in silence.

Stay strong, there is always a brighter side ❤❤❤

The Truth

Mental health, Sexual assault

The truth is, I hate my life. I wake up every morning wishing it was my last. I kiss my family goodnight and pray that I won’t wake up the next morning. I wish that I wouldn’t have to live another day, won’t have to suffer anymore. Because every day is a battle. I spend my days failing to distract my mind from the event that changed my life. I spent my days questioning if the thoughts, dreams and nightmares will ever end. If I will ever be able to move on, and actually live my life.

I have this dream of living alone in a secluded area. Just packing my bags, and leaving. Maybe to a different country, or maybe just down the road, but a place where no one would know where I am. I dream of being a mystery, disappearing from daylight. Strolls through wooded areas, sitting by a pond or river with no problems, just a book.

I want to go, I need to go.

The truth is I don’t actually want to die, I just want to escape reality. Escape day to day life. Never look back. I thought living on my own would change the way I think, but it doesn’t. It just makes me want it more. But sadly, these are just dreams. Im not a child, nor am I stupid, I know these types of realities happen for those living in the lap of luxury. I know that in order to survive, I have to work. I have to work a crappy nine to five job, come home, cook food, sleep and repeat all the next day. But what harm does dreaming cause? Because dreaming is my escape from reality, even just for a moment.

My Story

Mental health, Sexual assault

I realise that I have shared stories in the past, mostly about how I have overcome struggles in my life, but I have never actually shared the real story. BY this, I mean the story that defines my life, and changed me for both the better and for the worse. These are not the type of stories one usually likes to share, but I mean if placing this outside to the word is going to help raise awareness, well then, thats the best feeling I could ever imagine. I guess I should begin with the event. And by event, I mean a very traumatic experience. Just over a year ago I was sexually assaulted, in the worst possible way. Although I never like to use this word, as I feel it victimises me, I feel like in this particular post it is needed. I was raped. Was forced to do things I didn’t want to. For anyone else that has experienced this, or anything to a similar extent, would know the effects. The problem was, I didn’t experience the after effects until almost a year later. I pushed it to the back of my mind, forced myself to carry on with everyday life. I made a joke of it, and carried on as if nothing had happened. As if it was just a typical one night stand. At the time of this ordeal, I lived in a very small town, almost a village in fact, so as you can imagine I saw him almost everywhere I went. I saw him on nights out, I would see him shopping in the local Tesco, I even saw him at my local doctors with my mother. He was everywhere, so in my mind, pushing the thoughts back made me feel less of a victim.

I didn’t know him well. I had met him a few weeks prior at the local pub, a place full of youngsters much like myself. He was a friend of a friend, nothing more, nothing less. Honestly, I wasn’t too sure what I thought of him at first. He had this bad boy manor, which much like many other nineteen year olds, was attractive to me. He wasn’t cute. In fact, he was kind of ugly. He wasn’t fit, didn’t have a nice body, and had shaggy hair. But I was sucked in. He treated me well, he bought me a few drinks and walked me home, my friend tagging along. It was about a week later when my friend messaged me and asked if I wanted to meet her for a chat. She openly told me that this guy, who we will call ‘Andy’, wanted to see me again. I agreed to meet them, I thought what do I have to loose? Im single, nineteen and was sick of spending my nights alone in my room. Again, he had the kind manner about him, walking me home, and we even shared a little kiss. Nothing special, but it felt nice to be getting to know someone new. That was it. After that the only time I would see him was in the local, neither of us really talked. We grew apart, and had our own lives to carry on with. That was until the night of what happened. I was out with friends, had a few drinks, and received a message from ‘Andy’, stating that he was heading out and was wondering if he wanted to meet up. I agreed, thinking that we would go for a few drinks alone and talk, as I didn’t really know the guy. When he arrived, he was still in his work clothes, dirty and smelly. I tried to not let it bother me, and continued with my night. He joined us for a few drinks, and all in all it was a good night. A few drinks later, I began to feel very tipsy. My friends offered to walk me home, as it was only a two minute walk. But ‘Andy’ offered, as he hadn’t had much to drink, to drive me home. I willingly got into his car, and told him my address. We talked for a while, about mutual friends and shit. It was only then I realised we were going the complete opposite way, and actually leaving the town. I asked him where we were going, and all he said was somewhere out of town to talk. He pulled over to this lay-by in the middle of nowhere, and we talked for approximately two seconds before he went to stick his tongue down my throat. I told him that I’m not sure what he thinks is going on, but all I want to do was go home and sleep. He ignored me. He ignored everything I said that night.

The next few weeks dragged, I went out every night and pushed all thoughts to the back of my mind. I almost ignored the whole situation, and told no one. Not a friend, family member, no one. I guess back then I thought that was the best cure for this situation. A few weeks later found out I was pregnant, was being the operative word. Unaware of what my body was going through, I spent my days drinking and partying, ultimately killing the baby I never knew I had. This killed me for two reasons. One, I had just lost a child. And two, I wasn’t even sure if I wanted it anyway. For some this would have been some kind of wake up call, but instead I worsened myself. I suddenly had too many emotions to deal with alone, and couldn’t handle them. That when my emotions started to turn dangerous. I tried to kill myself approximately five times in the weeks to follow. I was in a downward spiral, unsure of what to do next. So instead, I packed up my stuff and moved to my parents in a small village in Wales.

The thoughts started to ease. I got a new job, started college and never felt better about myself. I even told my family what had happened, and even spoke to the police (although I never took it further). I was finally moving on. Everything was good until only a few months ago, when suddenly all of the emotions I had pushed back over the months came flooding back all at once. This time, I was seriously ill. I had finally pushed myself to my limit, and couldn’t see anyway out. Once again I tried to take my own life, and almost succeed at one point. I was admitted into the mental health ward in my local hospital, and was finally starting to get help, something I was reluctant to receive for a long time. Once I returned home, I received regular counselling and anti depressants. I started to feel better. I was FINALLY carrying on with my life. It was at that moment in my life that I started this blog, for some reason writing helped release my emotions as a-pose to bottling them all up.

Now I am attending University, for writing I might add, and living away from home. Sure I have bad days, but they are most definitely over run by the good ones. I think for the first time in a while, I can say I am happy. Like really happy. I know that there are others out there that have experienced this, and are most probably struggling, just like I was. But I can tell you that it honestly gets better. Don’t get me wrong, its not an easy journey, I know I have been there, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Trust me,

I found mine.

silhouette photography of group of people jumping during golden time

What makes you smile?

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What makes you smile? As in nothing else could compare to the feeling you get when you see a particular person or go to a particular place. For me, its the river. For some reason, when I step down from the bank onto the river edge, all my troubles and worries seem to   float away along the glorious water. It helps me think, makes me see things in a different way. About ninety percent of my biggest decisions in life has come from simply the flowing water just down from my house. Should I go to university? Yes. Should I move with my family across country? Yes. What is my main life goal? Journalism.

abstract background beach color

There has been many times in my life where I have questioned my very existence, unable to move from my mattress, stressing about anything and everything. There has been times where moving was not an option, but only to sit in the same old four walls and cry, and cry, and cry. Im assuming that if you are reading this post that you too have experienced this. Where is your happy place? What song motivates you in the morning? What truly makes you smile that nothing, and I mean nothing, could drag you down?

Just Cry

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For most University is an exciting and new time. And although the excitement was most definitely bubbling inside of me, so were the nerves. I thought of ways I could divert myself from homesickness, distract my mind on something else, something happier. And then it hit me, the best way to clear your mind of a bad emotion, is to release it. So I sat there for approximately 15 minutes on my first night, crying, and I can honestly say it helped. One thing I have learned over the years is that bottling up emotions does no good! Sure at the time you can push them to the back of your mind, and BAM you feel so much better, but once the mind cant store anymore emotions, thats when they begin releasing themselves, uncontrollably. Thats what happened to me, I held certain emotions back, and then once day they all came flying out at once. Thats the story of my mental breakdown, the day I actually thought I was going to die. To be totally honest, thats the day I tried to die. So when I post on this blog, it may seem half the time i’m chattering pure shite, but I do know what i’m talking about. Whatever emotion you are currently feeling, I can almost guarantee i’ve been there myself. But my best advice to anyone feeling down, sad, stressed or any kind of negative emotion, just cry! Release it. Crying isn’t a weakness.

Useful Links

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Health & Social Care Board

http://www.hscni.net/

Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety

http://www.dhsspsni.gov.uk/

Public Health Agency

http://www.publichealth.hscni.net/

Patient & Client Council

http://www.patientclientcouncil.hscni.net/

Health Trusts:

Mental Health Northern Area http://www.northerntrust.hscni.net/

Mental Health Southern Area http://www.southerntrust.hscni.net/

Mental Health South Eastern Area http://www.setrust.hscni.net/

Mental Health Western Area http://www.westerntrust.hscni.net/

Mental Health Belfast Area http://www.belfasttrust.hscni.net/

Department for the Economy

http://www.economy-ni.gov.uk/

Department for Communities

https://www.communities-ni.gov.uk/

Mental Health Information

http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/

Counselling services

http://www.counselling-directory.org.uk/  enables those in distress to find a counsellor close to them and appropriate for their needs.

Support for Children and their Families

http://www.parentsadvicecentre.org/familywellness/

Adult Safeguarding

http://www.hscboard.hscni.net/niasp/

Why?

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Today I am feeling rather down.

Why? Well thats the thing, I don’t really know. I guess everyone has these days, struggling to open your eyes in the morning, without having a single clue as to why. But when you live with this feeling everyday, struggling every morning, you start to question everything in your life. You start to question the point of living, the point of waking up and doing your regular routine. Nothing makes you happy, nothing strives you to carry on.

In school they teach everything from how to string a sentence together to calculus. But one thing they don’t teach you, is how to live. How to wake up in the morning and not feel like a worthless piece of shit. How to push yourself through that bad patch in your life, when you really don’t want to live. The moments that hold you back, the moments that push you to your last breath. No one prepares you for the big changes in your life, and how to handle them in a healthy and stable manner. These are the life lessons you must learn on your own. And the truth is no matter your age, no one knows the true answer as to why we feel like this. Why we struggle to wake up, and why the world often feels like its tumbling down on top of us. I guess all we can do is carry on and try, some how, to push through the bad patches in life. This is a task much easier said than done, I know, but why end our lives over a bad day? Because, sometimes, thats the only way out.

Speak out!

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Im reaching out to everyone reading this blog. Sometimes, the worst thing you can do is keep your thoughts to yourself. The more emotions you hold in, the more likely you are to burn out. Truth is there is only so much one can take before they have well and truly hit breaking point. For some it can be a major event or traumatic experience, but for others it can be simply a bad day. I am not qualified, nor would I ever intend on being, but I am a strong believer that strangers are the best people to talk to. Sitting your mother down, explaining everything going on in your life, why you wish you were dead, can be a hard conversation. But a stranger? Well, the chances are you are never going to see them again anyway. I would like to take this opportunity to reach out to everyone, and encourage you to talk to me. Share your stories, tell me about your shit day, talk to me about your dreams and aspirations! I created this blog for one purpose and one purpose only, to encourage. My contact details are on the menu selection, so please, open up and speak out!

achievement activity adolescent arms

Side note – If you wish to stay anonymous (completely understandable) then make sure you either leave the name section blank, or simply write ‘anonymous’.