When faced with the question ‘what would you like to see change in terms of mental health?’ its difficult to put down in only 450 words all the change that I wish would occur. There are so many issues for young people that need to be tackled and must be tackled soon.
In November I was honoured to be given this year’s Janey Antoniou Award and it really got me thinking about the bigger picture. I’ve never really thought much about what I do, I enjoy it, it’s engaging, it gives me a sense of purpose and I get just as much support from it as anyone.
Looking back, I sometimes feel quite angry. Why didn't someone realise? Why didn't *I* realise? I can't now think of a more obvious case of depression. But with so few realistic portrayals of mental illness on TV at the time, my knowledge was very limited. I knew that my mum experienced depression, but I didn't know what that meant. And besides, for every day I was accused of misery, there were ten more where I disguised my mood with humour.
For years, mental health debate was like a dinner party. Everyone knew each other. Everyone knew who was grumpy; who was friendly; who was practical and who was looking at the stars. Everyone turned up at the meetings and conferences and said what everyone expected them to say and listened to everyone saying exactly what they expected they would. Most people never got an invite to the dinner party.
My name is Trina. As well as my Christmas hat, I have several others in my collection. There are my campaigner, fundraiser and group coordinator hats, as well as my carers one. As you can see, I’ve gathered quite a collection over the years!
Marion Janner setup the charity Star Wards eight years ago to enhance inpatient mental health care. The charity provides practical, low-cost and easy to implement ideas to improve patients' quality of time and treatment outcomes.
Here she talks more about the work of the charity, how it feels to be part of the Guardian Christmas Appeal, and the role of Buddy, a 12 year old Tibetan Terrier, who regularly joins Marion on her visits to inpatient units.
QA Session with Nick Clegg and Norman Lamb
Hearing voices is normally described as a terrifying experience, but new research suggests attitudes to voice hearing differ dramatically depending on where you are in the world, with some cultures actually seeing them as ‘helpful’.
Our annual Janey Antoniou awards have honoured three inspiring individuals for their hard work and dedication to change the lives of those affected by mental illness.
Last week saw the end of Public Health England’s annual Stoptober campaign. Stoptober is the biggest stop smoking event in the UK and this year we saw over 250,000 people taking part. In a special blog, Professor Kevin Fenton from Public Health England discusses getting help when stopping smoking.