Opening Up!

I’ve hesitated before writing this as I was worried it might seem horribly self-indulgent. But I have decided to go ahead for a number of reasons. People have told me it’s a good idea, it’s time to break down the stigmas around mental health issues and the more people open up, the more that will happen. Also the massive support I have received when I have been open and the fact that I know I have already been some help to people by opening up. So, here goes!

I had a substantial ilness throughout 2010 and into this year. Some people who know me will know just how badly ill I was, some will not. I was able to disguise it to a large degree for short periods so could semi-function in public when I absolutely had to. This ability to hide it was a “skill” learnt from childhood onwards but I have come to realise it was not particularly helpful. Mostly I hid it behind a jester’s mask but not exclusively.

I want to be as open as possible in these accounts. I know that will not always be easy for the reasons stated above. I know it will also tend to make it a bit long winded. But I think it’s essential to get the whole picture across. I intended to write and publish this as a complete narrative but after advice and consideration I have realised that is not the best way to do it.

There is much I can not remember from my illness. I have had to rely in part on what others have told me. But I did manage to keep a diary for prolonged periods with encouragement from others. So some of this is memories from that. I also wrote quite a lot of poetry during this time. Some suprisingly good, some terrible! But it has helped me to remember.

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5 responses to “Opening Up!

  1. Guy, it is fantastic that you are starting this blog! It is also brave. However, I think you will find it a wonderful way of processing your illness while also helping others who might be able to relate. It isn’t self-indulgent at all. In fact, people who self-indulge don’t tend to worry about being self-indulgent!

    Take it one step at a time. It will get easier.

    I look forward to reading the ‘story’ of Guy Pedliham 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  2. Ditto … Gd Luck with getting it all down on paper, it will help x

  3. I think you’re doing a wonderful and brave thing. I have had such great response to my Mslexia posts about Black Dog – the more of us who talk honestly about what it’s like, the better treatment and understanding will be of depression.

    In case you haven’t seen them already, my Mslexia posts can be found here: http://www.mslexia.co.uk/blog/author/clare/

    I’ll be following your blog from now on. Good luck with it!

  4. I love the title….we are all on this journey with you Guy that’s what friends are for. Well done for being so honest with yourself that’s the hardest part over……XX

  5. Hi Guy, well done! Being open about mental health is a huge step towards acceptance for both yourself and others. I’ve recently blogged about my issues (still ongoing) and your comment about a jesters mask, struck a cord with me, You can read my post here http://bearfacedlady.blogspot.com/2011_07_01_archive.html but don’t feel obliged to! Good luck with the blog and all the best.

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