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To say MN has opened my eyes on Mental Health

(22 Posts)
Chelazla Fri 30-Dec-16 23:53:48

Just that's really. In rl I don't really know anyone with mental health issues, certainly no close friends and family. On MN however lots of people talk about anxiety, depression ect quite openly. Maybe because it's anonymous. It's got me to thinking if many people in rl must suffer in silence?

MEgirl Sat 31-Dec-16 00:35:13

I think that many do suffer in silence. Only after my kids started to suffer which subsequently affected me, did I start to talk to friends only to discover that at least 3 of them had or are taking anti-depressents at one time or another. Also, many more kids are suffering than people realise, despite the much increased mentions in the news.

WorraLiberty Sat 31-Dec-16 00:37:52

There isn't any way you could be unreasonable surely?

MN has opened my eyes to lots of things, most of which I'm very grateful for.

Yes, people in RL will suffer in silence for many reasons and I'm glad the internet has been a really useful release/outlet for many people.

That said, there are a few for whom I've often thought, actually the internet probably makes it worse.

But on the whole, I think it's a great thing.

manicinsomniac Sat 31-Dec-16 00:42:34

I don't think it's suffering in silence as much as not publicly sharing personal medical information.

I have no problem writing here that I have anorexia, anxiety, probably BPD and possible OCD but it's not something I would go round talking about unless I wanted to harm my career prospects, weaker social relationships and the way I am perceived in general.

But yes, MH issues are as common and varied as physical health issues. Everyone has physical health - if we're lucky it's usually good but it's poor for everyone at some stage. The same goes for mental health - we all have it, for most people it's generally okay but everyone has rough patches. For (1 in 3?) of us it's rough enough at some point to be/have been diagnosable.

manicinsomniac Sat 31-Dec-16 00:43:33

and YYY!!! to the internet making issues worse. Some of the forums out there are scary (but compulsive)

ellalouise123 Sat 31-Dec-16 00:46:08

I have anxiety and depression, have had it on and off for 3 years, only my husband knew. Until recently when it came to a head and I told my parents, my mum was shocked as she had no idea and is now upset that she hadn't 'guessed' but I think people just don't talk about it that much. I agree that the internet has made me feel more comfortable talking about it. A lot of my friends and family have been affected but some people just choose not to talk about it I guess. I have to say discussing it with my parents is a weight off my shoulders but I never felt like I 'should' have told anyone.

WorraLiberty Sat 31-Dec-16 00:48:07

True manic but even forums like Mumsnet and Facebook can be very bad for mental health/anxiety, as some people will believe the 'perfect picture' some people paint of themselves.

Or if they're particularly prone to attention seeking disorders/health anxiety/narcissism, the internet can often feed it more than people in RL might.

MissMatchedSocks Sat 31-Dec-16 01:32:56

It's a lot easier to be fully honest when talking online, particularly when it's anonymous. I have depression, anxiety and anorexia which people close to me know about but I tend to sanitise things for people closer to me because I don't want them to worry, I'm the same with downplaying physical health issues as well, but online I can talk more openly because of the lack of attachment between me and the people I'm speaking to.

ScreechingWeasel Sat 31-Dec-16 01:48:19

People are scared to talk about mental health problems.

I'm very vocal in RL about my PND. If that helps even one struggling new mom realise they are OK then I'm doing a good job.

Graphista Sat 31-Dec-16 01:55:29

I hid what was going on in real life for a LONG time, given the statistics plus what I've discovered about those close to me since/when I disclose chances are there's several people you know who have mh conditions/are getting treatment.

I've been really surprised what I've found out. Just recently the most together person I know revealed they're having problems.

May the loss of stigma and more understanding continue and hopefully we'll finally get proper recognition from those in a position to ensure good quality and enough treatment too.

FastWindow Sat 31-Dec-16 01:56:38

It's got it's ups and downs, this publicising of stuff.

I remember getting hold of a copy of Dr Spock when I was 7. Convinced I had croup, or TB, or scarlet fever, until mum hid the book. The Internet is the new Dr Spock.

Same can be said for all sorts on here. But I like to think that the majority of posters are here to help, so when people post about their problems and fears, they can find some alleviating stories that either confirm or deny what they are experiencing : and then go on to find rl help.

FastWindow Sat 31-Dec-16 02:00:39

Aligning stories, not alleviating.

I've had mh roadblocks. I've had help to move them. They never quite go, but they get flatter, more surmountable, not the brick wall they pretend to be at my worst.

sobeyondthehills Sat 31-Dec-16 02:09:36

I agree people are scared about saying something about their mental health. I have had:

What do you have to be sad about (that was my mum)
But you are not sad
You are just lazy
But I saw you out the other day
You just like a tidy house

I have GAD, Rapid cycling bipolar, OCD and about three years ago was suicidal. I still have those thoughts and at times they are deafening, but I am in a better place. I can now walk the dog by myself, which two years was impossible.
Part of the problem with mental health is so many people put a brave face on it, I am still very blase on it when I talk about it, to many people because I am so use to doing it.
The other problem is the phrases, I hate the I so OCD about my cleaning my kitchen. Sort of comments.

I am also much stronger in saying, I am no more ashamed of having mental health issues than I would be with any other disease. I can't help it any more than someone getting a physical disease.

Graphista Sat 31-Dec-16 02:18:30

Yep one of mine is agoraphobia and I've had people 'I saw you out' they don't understand that sometimes you're doing better than at others, also that agoraphobia has levels.

Currently totally housebound, but depending how well or ill I am it can vary from that to being able to walk to the end of my street, to my 'corner' shop, to my small local town up to on a VERY good day with lots of meds and a suitable companion, my local city (if it's somewhere familiar and I plan to the nth degree!), some days are more manageable than others for practical reasons eg I tend to avoid weekends as its too busy for me, or bank holidays.

Also had 'you don't seem sad' or the accusatory 'I saw you smile' - smiling doesn't even necessarily indicate how you feel! It might be out of politeness or for a photo.

So still a lot of educating to do.

UnbornMortificadoAtChristmas Sat 31-Dec-16 02:25:24

I think it's 1/10 the official stats.

It's good it's spoke about more openly now there seems to be less stigma attached.

I'm quite open about mine in real life but I average one hospitalisation a year so it would be difficult to hide.

I do find people I don't know that well have confided in me when they have been worried. So if being open encourages people to seek help it can only be a good thing.

FastWindow Sat 31-Dec-16 02:38:32

sobeyond yep I'm blasé too. So as not to burden the person I'm telling.

thisissobad Sat 31-Dec-16 03:10:28

Graphista I managed to get on a programme, don't know how, but I am lucky that my GP is bloody amazing, where I had someone come out once a week to just walk with me, each and everytime we managed to get to my son's nursery, passed that I had panic attacks and on good days just crying. In the end we had to stop, because I started dreading those visits, it was just a step too far too soon.

Fastwindow I certainly think that is my reason as well. I also have the yep I'm fine phrase down pat.

Graphista Sat 31-Dec-16 04:06:28

Thisissobad that sounds like cbt which works to a point then doesn't for me which is what sounds like what happens with you too. I've found a combination of meds, talking therapy, mindfulness, certain types of trauma therapy help - the problem is EVERY time I get a new 'person' I have to talk them into accepting that's what works FOR ME they almost always have a set idea of 'this is what NICE recommends' and are usually inflexible - so frustrating! Ditto with new Drs they ALWAYS want to change the meds to the latest 'wonder drug'

Foslady Sat 31-Dec-16 07:25:19

For years I hid mine scared I'd loose my job. It's only since I had PND that I've been more open about it, but then xh made it into something I should be 'ashamed' of that I stopped being as open. Then last year I finally 'broke' and the anxiety couldn't be hidden any more. I think a lot of the hiding is done because of fear of others preconceptions. If you are already anxious the last thing you need is to feel like you are being judged

CrohnicallyPregnant Sat 31-Dec-16 09:18:02

I'm a lot more open on here than RL.

I'm just not sure how people in RL will react and also how much info is 'too much'- I am autistic among other things so this is hard for me.

And what would I gain by telling people? On here I can almost guarantee that there will be someone suffering or having had the same. I can also dip into 'conversations' as and when I feel like it. I don't have to process tone of voice and facial expressions either. Whereas in RL after I've told someone they have to react in some way, and then I'll be analysing it for days, did I do the right thing in telling them? Do they pity me or is it genuine sympathy? What happens the next time I see them?

Online communication is generally better for me, so it makes sense that I would talk about my mental health more online too.

Babyroobs Sat 31-Dec-16 10:36:41

Half my colleagues are on anti-depressants or anxiety meds ( stressful occupation). I have had 2 friends in recent years who have taken their own lives due to mental health issues. Mental health problems are very common and I don't think their is enough help available.

UnbornMortificadoAtChristmas Sat 31-Dec-16 11:16:41

Fos that's horrible sad

No one should be ashamed of a health issue.

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