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Liam Lillico | University of Sunderland

Broadcast Journalism BA (Hons)

Let’s Talk About Mental Health.

I’m writing this blog post a few days in advance at 1:40am, in between bar shifts, so this is the warning for the possibility of spelling mistakes, and that this isn’t a happy-go-lucky post for Easter eggs. Maybe not the best time for it, but there never really is. It could also be perceived as a selfish post. Maybe.

I feel like watching the video I filmed to sit with it, might first get this post started;

[youtube id=”PbidllMHW3I” parameters=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbidllMHW3I”]

There. Done. I said it. I ‘suffer’ from panic, anxiety and depression. I have done for a very big proportion of my life. Still awkward? Sorry not sorry. It’s like I said in the video. It’s only possibly awkward because of that created stigma around it all.

I should start properly by saying my bouts of depression have not been as dark as some peoples, but present and existing all the same. At the end of the day though, that doesn’t or shouldn’t matter because either way, it was and still is a thing. A thing that unfortunately, is looked down upon or brushed to the side constantly.

I’m not going to sit here, or in this case- lie in bed and tell you all of this shpeal. I’m not a doctor. But to me, to be depressed.. If you haven’t been, is probably difficult to understand. The best way I can describe it is- imagine a dark thing. Like a cloud, completely taking hold of you and taking over your sense of self and rationality. It consumes you and and makes you a total different person. Essentially a crippled version of you. An opposite version even. The simplest of tasks become a chore and things that one time got you smiling, just don’t. You don’t want to get out of bed in the morning (not just in a ‘this is too comfortable’ kind of way, either.).

Whenever I think back to times I’ve ‘been at my worst’, I straight away think of a time that I must have been about, 13. On my 3rd day straight of not leaving my room, getting out of bed or wanting to talk to anyone at all, my mother questioned what was wrong with me. I also remember how I didn’t talk to her about it. Why would I? It’s like I said- there’s a stigma around it all that tells people not to talk about it. Even 7 years ago.

Maybe now would be a good time to interject that I haven’t told many, if any really, of my friends and family about this.. Hi, if you fall into this category. (My bad. Call or text if you want to chat.)

Might I even dare say I’m ‘lucky’ I’ve never had it to the extent of stories that I’ve heard? If that’s what I’m classed as, then it sucks and I don’t want to be, because no one is lucky in any situation involving depression.

Right now I’m placed in a ‘situational depression’ category, if that’s what they’re called. This means it’s brought on by various factors in my life. Most notably the panic and anxiety levels on the rise, stress, financial strain, work related issues, the list could and does go on, but the point has been made I think..

Regardless of the ‘triggers’, it’s still something I’ve been dealing with and not talking about since November of last year. That’s a long, painful silence. This is me talking about it, just in an obscure way. Some days are better than others, some aren’t. Some days, I can laugh some days I can’t. I guess this is here now as a reminder for the bad days. As a reminder that “it’s ok, not be ok.” I might struggle with my self worth some days, and that’s alright. I’d like to think we all do.

It baffles me that in 2015, mental health issues are so often played down, overlooked or used as a tool of blame. So please, let’s talk about mental health. Mental illness is a thing. It exists. “When we break our arm, everyone runs forward to sign the cast. But when we say we have depression, everyone runs the other way.” Just because it doesn’t have a cast, doesn’t mean it’s not real. You can’t see wind but you know it’s a thing, right?

If you’re like me and haven’t spoken about it, please do. There’s people in your life that want you to, whether you realise that or not. (I know, easier said than done.)

Let’s talk about mental health. The sooner we do, the sooner the stigma will be a distant memory.

Thank you.

http://youtu.be/-Qe8cR4Jl10

– Liam

Human. Student. Traveler. Blogger. Writer. Filmmaker. Radio Person. Part time Super Hero.

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  • Name: Liam Lillico
  • Age: 19
  • Studying: Broadcast Journalism BA (Hons)
  • Hometown: Newcastle, UK
  • Ambitions: I've always wanted to do something in media. but there's so much to chose from... Right now, I want to be a script writer!
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