New Year, Fuck You

Recovering from Christmas is hard.

Christmas can be such a draining time for anyone, let alone people like us. Social demands, financial stress, festive pressure to be cheery, family drama, food and alcohol everywhere – sure, it can be a fabulous time of year but there are pitfalls around every corner.

And what makes it even more draining? New Year is next up, followed by the rest of January. The month of new year new me, when social media is littered with healthy eating, workouts and decluttered lives. Everyone’s hell bent on self improvement for 31 days and sometimes it feels like crap.

You tell yourself you’ll ignore it. You won’t let it get to you. You’re working on yourself and you’re here to see another year so you won’t let it get to you that the girl you hate from school but for some reason have on Facebook is engaged, expecting and about to buy a house, or that the person you kind of like is out on a date with that person that must be better than you in every way, or that your cousin is still loving their dream job or that everyone in the world is hashtag blessed and making you feel like shit for still feeling like shit.

But you know what? Fuck it! You are still here, surviving, fighting, healing, recovering. Your life has so many chapters left, so many years to surprise and delight you. January is just another month like any other and you kicked ass in the last 12. This month is no different.

It’s ok if it takes you a while to heal from Christmas. It’s ok if your January isn’t filled with self promises and positivity. It’s ok to still feel down and negative. It’s ok to have bad days, bed days, lazy days and head days. It’s ok that Christmas is something you need to heal from, even if you had a good time.

So breathe. Hug your cat. Take your meds. Have a bath. Call your friend. Watch TV. Just – do you. You don’t need to review last year right now or make plans for the new one. Just know it will be as strong, resilient and ever changing as you.

Merry Christmas

This is my sign off post for the year, in which I want to thank you all for a wonderful 6 months since I started this blog.

Christmas is a funny time of year, whatever you believe or celebrate. Mental health is often forgotten, or people expect you to forget yours in favour of bright lights, wrapping paper and jolly noise. For some of us that’s easier said than done. For some of us, Christmas time piles on that extra stress of hiding what’s really going on in our heads. For some of us we feel guilt, shame, loneliness…

You are still you tomorrow, and whether you are surrounded by many or a chosen few – you deserve real smiles, not fake ones, and a shoulder to lean on if you need it, regardless of what day it is.

I hope you all have the Christmas you deserve. Stay safe. And if you need a friend, my instagram DM box is open all year round 💙

An Open Letter To My Abandonment Issues

An open letter to my abandonment issues – or as she will hereby be referred to as, Abi.

Abi…we’ve been together for a very long time, since I was a child in fact. You never understood why people left, why they argued, why they got mad and said mean things or why they slammed doors and left vibrating rooms empty. You felt lost in the silence. We both did.

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Push It Real Good: Mental Health and Exercise

For a fat chick you wouldn’t think that I love the gym as much as I do. You wouldn’t think that I’ve been known to go 4 times a week for months on end or that my free weight game is on point. I can lift, squat, bike and row for an hour until I’m sweating and panting and feeling more alive than ever.

It’s a complete contradiction, I know, but for someone who suffers with bouts of social anxiety and body issues, the gym is one of my safest spaces.

Push It Real Good: Mental Health and Exercise

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Mental health, moggies, mutts and all that’s in between

Ever since I was born I’ve always had a lot of pets. There’s animal lovers on both sides of my family and so from furry to feathered to scaly, I’ve always been around a variety of pets. I guess this is why I never really thought about the relation between pets and mental health because I had no ‘before pets’ status to compare it to, but it’s obvious to millions of us that there’s such a strong connection there.  

Along with my own experiences, I asked you lovely bunch how your animal friends affect your mental health and you were all too happy to wax lyrical about your fuzz babies. It turns out there’s a whole side to this bond I’d never even noticed.  

So let’s talk about mental health, moggies, mutts and all that’s in between.

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Ten Pearls of Wisdom From Someone Ten Years Self Injury Free

This month is quite a milestone for me, marking ten years since I gathered the last of my strength (at the time) and made the decision to stop self harming. 

This was not a decision that I took lightly, and even down to the last 12 months there have been days where I didn’t know how much longer I would last. But, made it to ten years I have, and now I’d like to pass on some things I’ve learned along the way to all my fellow recoverers.

Ten pearls of wisdom from someone ten years self injury free.
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The Mental Health and Marriage Misconception

With my two year wedding anniversary just days away, this week seemed like the perfect time to talk about mental health and marriage, but probably not in the way you’re thinking about.

I love my wife. I love her more than life itself. She’s an incredible person, my absolute best friend and the greatest co captain I could ever ask for in life… But I’m still fucked up.

I still have mental health issues, triggers, quirks and meltdowns with the same severity as if I were single and I believe it’s a common misconception that mental health issues are easier when you have a partner when in reality –

Just because I’m married doesn’t make me any less fucked up than you.

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Somewhere Over The Rainbow

The other week I watched the BBC Three documentary ‘Growing Up Gay’ about how the LGBT community is more likely to be affected by mental health. The documentary was presented by Years and Years singer Olly Alexander, and delved into the harsh realities of our struggling LGBT youth. The documentary stated that 40% of the LGBT community suffers with their mental health, compared to 25% of heterosexuals.

That’s quite a difference.

In 2017 the perception is that everything is hunkey dorey for the LGBT community, especially in the UK. We can marry, have children, socialise safely and go about our lives knowing that we are legally protected from discrimination and hate crime.

But clearly all is not as it seems.

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Is Suicide Really Selfish?

Yesterday, Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park, took his own life. I’m sure you’ve read countless articles and seen it splashed all over social media by now so I won’t recite the details again. You’ve also probably already seen the conversations around how this has been happening more and more as of late amongst middle aged men of profession (Chris Cornell, Robin Williams).

If you’re anything like me,  you’ll have gone through the comments to many of these articles, especially the one about Korn guitarist calling Chester a coward. Due to Chester leaving behind a wife, 6 children and countless devastated friends and fans, people just can’t get their head around how someone could do that to people they love. So I pose the question…

Is suicide really selfish?

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