Choice is, "Shall we paint the bedroom blue or green?" or even "'Shall we start a family?" Choice is not, "Shall I have constant PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) flashbacks?", nor is it, "Shall I be bipolar and be so hard to live with that my partner leaves me?" It is also not, "Shall I feel so depressed that I'll think about ending it all?"
Many of us are choosing a greener lifestyle, and that goes for medication too. Holistic therapist Sorrell Robbins explains "The idea of alternative medicine - namely herbs - is to help moderate and balance the individual alongside medical and/or psychiatric care and not to cure conditions that mainstream doctors were unable to".
If there is one plea I could make to all of the media companies it is please never underestimate the need for more mental health challenging content. With such a huge proportion of the population affected one way or another by mental health related issues, we need to reach out, educate and challenge the stigma attached to them.
It recently came to my attention that the best person to assess a client with mental health needs is in fact, the postman. Firstly, yes I have been taking my lithium. Now, think about it, the postman, if a regular to the same address, ticks the box that good psychiatry practices, but very often fails.
One in four people will experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives, yet it's still seems such a difficult subject to talk about. I remember 20 years ago, no one talked about cancer. Why is it that when an illness is visible, we can embrace the patient, but when it is invisible, in the mind, we seem scared to even say the words?
I recently watched a film - a terrible film - which had an archaic, grotesque depiction of life in a psychiatric ward. After I recovered from the boredom, I woke up, wiped dribble from my shirt, and then started to ponder over it. It was frustrating to think that people who have no experience of this kind of environment may be influenced by such a portrayal.