Mental Health / The Negative Stigma & How it Affects Everyone (feat. Oli Regan)

Let’s face it. We’ve all seen for ourselves the negative stigma that has become attached to Mental Health. The negative stigma has all too often put a strain on all governments and organisations, with Mental Health sufferers having to experience the harsh reality that they may end up not being allowed to access the help, support and treatment they need.

What is Mental Health?

Mental Health is where a person may possibly have a condition that affects their psychological and well-being in the emotional sense.

For instance, there are so many recognised Mental Health conditions that affect more or less everyone, in this case, this can be Anxiety, Depression, Post-Natal Depression, ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) and even Bipolar.

There are so many recognised Mental Health conditions around that with the correct help, support and treatment available, can help anyone suffering from Mental Health to control the type of Mental Health condition they suffer from.

Is Mental Health Often Ignored?

In the real world, Mental Health is often ignored, which is why the stigma attached to Mental Health all too often creates a negative spiral that sees governments and organisations making little to no effort to provide funding for help, support, treatment and even medical supplies for those who need it the most.

The Mental Health Foundation highlighted that each year, more than 6,000 suicides occur in the UK & Ireland as a result of a lack of funding for Mental Health, with more than 55,000 suicides occurring in the European Union.

The suicide rate for Mental Health sufferers is dangerously high, because again, there is a lack of funding which means that Mental Health sufferers aren’t being provided the help, support and treatment that they need, which ultimately puts any Mental Health sufferer at risk of committing suicide.

Is Social Media Responsible for Creating Problems in Mental Health Sufferers?

The harsh reality is that social media is responsible for creating problems in Mental Health sufferers, because not a day goes by where I am on Facebook & Twitter where I don’t see a positive comment being made about someone who suffers from Mental Health.

I am disgusted by the large number of those on social media who feel it’s okay to make those suffering from Mental Health feel insecure about their appearance, how they act towards others, including what they look like.

Social media is connected to the negative stigma in the personal sense, because when it is not used properly, anyone can make abusive comments about others and that can effectively have a negative impact on the person suffering from that specific Mental Health condition.

Oli Regan’s Experiences With Mental Health

Oli Regan, who is an aspiring actor and ambassador for Time to Change, was just one of many Mental Health sufferers who had struggled to open up about his feelings of loneliness and isolation, both of which he experienced for so many years, which was brought on by bipolar and anxiety, which led him to contemplate suicide, and in some circumstances, he attempted to commit suicide.

Of course, Oli’s experiences with Mental Health affected his wellbeing, and he mentioned in an article he did with TheLADBible as part of the UOKM8? Campaign that: “I just felt weak. Like I wasn’t a real man, I felt like I was missing something. I felt lonely. Completely isolated.

Oli’s experiences with Mental Health enabled him to raise awareness and to give all those who suffer from Mental Health their voice and to make sure that if you’re a Mental Health sufferer, then it’s good to open up and talk about your experiences with Mental Health and how they affect you.

My Experiences With Anxiety

For me, and this is personal to my wellbeing, although I haven’t officially been diagnosed with having a Mental Health condition, I am not ashamed to admit I suffer from Anxiety.

Of course, I often feared that if I opened up to everyone about how I really feel that I would be targeted just for being the man I am in speaking up about how I really feel.

At school, if I cried, I was bullied and all too often, if I spoke to someone in confidence about how I was really feeling, I would be targeted just for being honest and open about how I really felt emotionally.

I often tend to bottle my emotions up but it’s only recently that I did suffer from some anxiety attacks that were brought on by personal problems and heartbreak which caused me to have a panic attack and also break down in tears.

Since that first panic attack and since I broke down in tears during those anxiety attacks, I have been able to open up to everyone and I feel a lot more confident talking to someone about how I really feel, and it gives me peace of mind knowing I can turn to a counsellor and everyone else for support. I am a lot stronger now than I was before and a lot more confident as well as I can speak up a lot more and not be afraid to speak my mind and say how I really feel.

This is the first time ever that I have actually admitted to all of you I suffer from Anxiety and this took a lot of guts for me to open up on my own experiences with Anxiety in general.

Conclusion

I personally feel that the negative stigma attached to Mental Health needs to disappear permanently and that Mental Health should never be ignored.

Governments and organisations should make all the effort possible to put their funding into help, support and treatment for any Mental Health sufferers and to make sure that every Mental Health sufferer gets the help, support and treatment that they need.

One more thing, it’s about time we all open up and say to everyone exactly how we feel, and in a society and any society that tells you to ‘man up’, all societies need to get a grip and realise that Mental Health doesn’t just exist for a reason, but that it exists because we are all born differently and never the same.

If you are a Mental Health Sufferer and you have just one or many of the recognised Mental Health conditions as well as the Mental Health Conditions mentioned here, then please feel free to comment below. I would love to hear your response.

Alex Smithson

Recommended Article Worth Looking At (Please Read): Lad Opens Up About Battle With Bipolar And Anxiety And His Attempted Suicide

#TIMETOTALK / Let’s End this Stigma Against Mental Health Once and for All!

As #TIMETOTALK is officially trending on Twitter, Oli Regan has asked me to write this article as today will be about being able to speak up about Mental Health, including the negative stigma that affects and negatively impacts those suffering from Mental Health. Today is Time to Talk Day, and this news came at exactly the right time.

You can catch Oli Regan live on BBC Two at 9:30 AM this morning, and at 10:30 AM, Oli will be appearing on the Victoria Derbyshire Show.

Oli Regan will also be talking about Mental Health at 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM on BBC Newsbeat today, so if you want to help end this stigma once and for all, please make sure to use the hashtag #TIMETOTALK and please also make sure to spread the word and raise awareness for Mental Health.

Alex Smithson

#MENTALHEALTHAWARENESS #TIMETOCHANGE #TIMETOTALK #ENDTHESTIGMA #TIMETOTALKDAY

Does Social Media Have a Long-Lasting Impact on Mental Health?

All around the world, everyone uses social media; it’s become the norm of the digital world, but just how much of a long-lasting impact can social media have on mental health?

Social media can have a profound and negative impact on mental health, because social networking websites, such as Facebook, Twitter, even Instagram, can be the source of body image problems. Why? Because these websites have been used to inadvertently make anyone feel insecure, and body image can be a crucial factor that can negatively impact and affect a person’s mental health.

As a user on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, I always watch the comments that come up on status updates, even the comments that come up on Instagram pictures and also on Twitter. Trust me, the comments I’ve read on these social networks are degrading, patronising and not only that, but some of those comments can be misogynistic. They can cause insecurities in anyone but more importantly, when body image comes into comments, it can have a negative impact on how someone looks and those comments can be very disgusting.

Body image where insecurities are concerned can be the root cause for someone to change their appearance because comments are made about how they look and what they look like, which is tantamount to bullying. With bullying, this can cause a lack of social interaction for those in the real world, as a person’s body image shouldn’t matter, let alone their insecurities, but a lack of social interaction means that that person cannot feel secure in themselves and that person cannot be themselves.

I read up on the English radio and television presenter, George Lamb (Larry Lamb’s son) just recently, and someone made a website on the photo-blogging platform, Blogger, in which the defamatory website was aimed at him in a hurtful and negative way. Obviously, I cannot write the name of the website here as the title of the website is extremely defamatory and offensive but it just goes to show that defamatory websites and abusive language on social media can cause anyone to feel insecure and uncomfortable in the real world.

Some of the abusive language I have seen on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram have led some people to self-harm, and self-harm is where you harm yourself to the point of almost committing suicide. I know a lot of friends of mine who have self-harmed in the past and it’s not a nice feeling to see a friend with marks on their arms. I have never self-harmed in my entire life but I know for my friends, it hurts for them, and it upsets me because I wouldn’t want them to be in a bad place at all, but even so, social media can have a negative impact on mental health, and it can also affect anyone’s lives.

I have noticed ever since social media came about that it has thrown face-to-face communication out of the window, because not a single day goes by where I don’t see someone on their smartphone or tablets, and I don’t mean no offence when I say this, but it annoys me, because I could be talking to someone about something that may benefit their life, and if their eyes are pasted to their smartphones or tablets, and they don’t pay attention to me or even acknowledge what I’ve said to them, it really gets my back up, because it’s like talking to a brick wall. Now I know I might sound like a fine one to talk as I use a tablet and smartphone, but I pay attention to what I’m told and if someone is speaking to me, I acknowledge them straightaway and listen to them.

Personally, I prefer talking face-to-face with someone as it really helps to get things done quicker and it also helps to prevent arguments and important information from being lost. Face-to-face communication matters in this world and that change can happen without using any technology.

In conclusion, social media and technology causes a lack of social interaction and a lack of face-to-face communication, and it can have a negative impact on mental health. Mental Health is often ignored because of the negative stigma, but only we can change that. Only you can change that and only you can help others in need, but more importantly, it’s time to end the stigma on mental health and it’s time to take a stand against social media and stand up and fight to end the stigma against mental health. Now is the time to raise awareness for mental health, but more importantly, now’s our time to really make the positive change and the best difference in this world.

If you feel that the stigma against mental health should end, and if you want to raise awareness for mental health, please feel free to submit feedback. Your feedback is much appreciated.

Plus, if you missed my collaborative article with the famous actor from GIANTLAND, Oli Regan, don’t worry, I will hyperlink the article below so you don’t miss out.

Alex Smithson

Are Autism & Mental Health Overlooked? (Parental Guidance is Advised)

Are Autism & Mental Health Overlooked? (Parental Guidance is Advised)

Autism & Mental Health are the types of things no-one, and I mean no-one should be laughing at, and I know that for a fact considering I have friends that were born with Autism and have suffered from Mental Health.

You may be wondering why I am writing this. Well there’s a perfectly valid reason. In the last few weeks, a guy and an organisation, both of who I can’t name for legal reasons because I don’t know their names, believe that Autism can be cured, when actually it isn’t curable.

This comes after a man was secretly filmed who believed that Autism can be cured. Well I can say in my defence that the footage that has been doing the rounds on the internet and on TV is disgusting.

For that guy and the organisation involved to think it’s funny and for them to think that Autism can be cured is disgraceful. Why should I have to hide how I feel about these disgusting excuses for people who think it’s okay to create a mockery of those who were born with Autism and suffer from Mental Health? I’m not hiding what I really think of this whole situation.

OOOOH it makes me so cross! You seriously haven’t the faintest idea how I really feel about this headline. I’m sorry if what I’ve just said came across rude but I am seriously fucked off big time about it. I hate those who think it’s okay to judge someone because they have Autism. I also hate those who think it’s okay to judge someone because they suffer from Mental Health.

Mental Health and Autism have always been known to be very misunderstood, and they have always been the kind of mentions that often get left out in the cold.

I have friends that suffer from Mental Health and friends that were also born with Autism, and I give them full respect all the time, because they deserve my full respect regardless. I wholeheartedly respect everyone with Mental Health and Autism and I respect everyone regardless, but I cannot stand the judgemental types that think it’s okay to make a mockery of someone who was born with Mental Health Problems and Autism.

I recently vented my words of fury on social media after this news headline went out and I did not even for a single second hold back, I made sure to let everyone know how I really felt about the clip and the guy and the organisation that believed that Autism and Mental Health is curable. F.Y.I to the guy and the organisation who claimed that Autism and Mental Health Problems can be cured, SHAME ON YOU!!!

Oli Regan, the famous actor from the upcoming film, GIANTLAND, sent his messages of praise to me on Wednesday 28th September 2016 after I vented my words of fury on social media, and he said himself that: “Mental Health is so overlooked!” and I agree. Mental Health and Autism are overlooked and are always left out in the cold with no consideration attached to it and it’s about time that both were recognised and it’s about time that we all do everything we can to give those who were born with Autism or Mental Health all the support, love and care that they really need 100%.

Oli Regan also suffers from bipolar and mental health, and I couldn’t agree more with why he felt so disgusted with this whole situation regarding Autism and Mental Health being overlooked. I am furious, and I will be honest, I am not prepared, nor will my voice be silenced for the benefit of those that are judgemental.

It is an absolute honour to collaborate with Oli Regan, as he knows what Mental Health is like and how it affects millions of people, but you have to give full respect to him. He knows exactly what he’s talking about as he has suffered from bipolar and mental health his entire life. I will provide links down below that will benefit and help those of you who may be autistic and may suffer from mental health, as I want to do my bit to help out and to do something good.

Below is the short film trailer, Mental Health Awareness, by Oli Regan. It’s worth watching, you don’t want to miss this! His film trailer delivers a powerful message of its own that should never be ignored let alone be forgotten about.

I can honestly say, aside from the controversial clip of that guy and the organisation who made a mockery of those with Autism and Mental Health, it’s an absolute honour to collaborate with the famous actor, Oli Regan, from GIANTLAND, on this topic of discussion, as he has raised awareness of Mental Health on top of Autism, and even though Autism may not be something mentioned or shown in this short trailer, it does send a powerful message that even those who are different to you go through different experiences in life as well as your own.

If you want to see more of Oli Regan’s work, search #DONTMANUP on YouTube and use the same hashtag and spread the word on Twitter. We need to raise awareness for both Mental Health & Autism and now is the time! Also, if you want to raise awareness further, spread the word with the hashtag above and also the hashtag #UOKM8, including the hashtags #MentalHealthAwarenessDay, #IAMWHOLE #WorldMentalHealthDay, #Depression, #Anxiety, #MentalHealthAwareness, #GIANTLAND, #Bipolar, #Pnd and #PTSD.

If you are someone who has Mental Health or Autism, please comment below and I can say this. Never be afraid to speak up on Mental Health and Autism, it’s about time you got your voices heard. Never suffer in silence. Now is the time to really prove a point and to take a stand to end the stigmas of all stigmas that go against Mental Health and Autism. Please raise awareness for Mental Health & Autism.

Alex Smithson

Mental Health & Autism Links

https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk

http://www.sane.org.uk/what_we_do/young_sane/oli_regan

http://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/a-z-mental-health/

http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth/Pages/Mentalhealthhome.aspx

http://citymha.org.uk

http://www.wlmht.nhs.uk

http://www.centreformentalhealth.org.uk

https://www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/services/health-and-wellbeing/Pages/mental-health.aspx

http://www.autism.org.uk/autism

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/autistic-spectrum-disorder/pages/introduction.aspx

http://researchautism.net

https://www.autism-anglia.org.uk

https://www.ambitiousaboutautism.org.uk/talk-about-autism

Welcome! Let me tell you a little bit about us and what we do

https://www.autismresearchcentre.com

http://www.autismeducationtrust.org.uk

http://www.bb88.co.uk/

http://www.theladbible.com/mental-health/uk-lad-opens-up-about-his-attempted-suicide-20160929#