I am trying, you may not think so but I am. I honestly can't help nor control this and I'm sorry. Don't shout at me when I ignore you ringing me. I swear it's not you I just I don't feel like I can take your words ringing in my ears. I can't concentrate; I'll forget what you said anyway.
My anxiety and depressive episodes in recent years have impacted upon my life considerably. But finally, there is light at the end of the tunnel. I write to offer a message of hope, a message that hopefully will resonate with many mental health sufferers. It gets better.
If you are reading this and struggling with a life challenge, if you want to talk to someone but aren't sure who, then even if you feel embarrassed, unsure, nervous, just follow the suggestion in the Samaritans campaign title 'Talk to Us'.
Discriminating against race is unacceptable but so is discriminating against mental health. The media are in a powerful position, they can either educate a lot of people or cause a lot of damage. It's about time they stepped up and began educating instead of sensationalising and discriminating.
I have often thought that among contemporary institutions - prisons and mental hospitals - you will find interesting art. Art often does not recognise the same mental health barriers that we maintain in society.
There is a lot I have discovered since you took your own life. Firstly, while there is no hierarchy of death where one is better than the other, it's safe to say that living a long life is at the top while a short one is at the bottom. I don't know where suicide sits, but it's safe to say, it makes other people REALLY uncomfortable. I was advised against telling people how you died. And in the initial bizarreness of picking your burial plot and coffin (and being asked whether Robert was an eco-friendly man), I erred on the side of caution. But by this 30th day, I have realised when the worst, most devastating thing possible happens, you lose the energy to maintain any artifice.
No one would be brazen enough to say that universities are ever going to be ideal environments for one's health. Few would be brazen enough to expect that. But if our hospitals are places to reduce poor health, is it too much of a stretch to suggest that our universities ought to be places that protect good health?
So, I've spent the best part of four months unpicking my life, my personality, what I 'know' and how I think, and trying to absorb new mindful ways to manage whatever out of life's toolbox of suffering will fly at me next and in fact I don't feel any better equipped; I feel weakened, worried and considerably worse about myself.
Child neglect has been staring us in the face for too long. Headlines relate the tragic stories of children who grow up shockingly deprived and, in extreme cases, die because of neglect. These children not only lack basic essentials like nutritious food and adequate clothing, they also lack the love, support and warmth that every youngster needs to thrive.
It's a challenge to represent emotions that are often private in a way that can be understood quickly, but the photos of people with their head in their hands tend to be stereotypical and fairly hopeless.
During my three days of contemplation and dismay a cloud of consciousness floated in my window. Cuddling a cup of tea I realised that after months of living deliriously depressed and convinced of my lack of existence, I did in actual fact exist.
A couple of weeks ago, I attended the Results UK, National Conference, where the theme was on the post-2015 agenda. Fittingly, with the proposed targe...
There is no biological reason for why economic depression should lead to clinical depression. It's entirely social and political. We're all affected, and we need more public figures to be talking about it.
We see every day that a starting point for recovery is contact with other veterans. This rarely quiet and often laughing band of brothers is the key to initial success. Later must come the move to a civilian identity, but the key is to find a civilian identity that is larger than, but includes, a veteran identity.
So, I went to Australia to meet the Dalai Lama, as you do. I was asked to speak at a conference called, "Happiness And Its Causes", like I know? I told them this was not my specialty as I am a cynic but they held out the Dalai Lama as bait, and I bit...
Research tells us that some men tend to use alcohol as a long term crutch to get them through tough emotional times, and they are less likely to seek help unless they reach a crisis. This means that by the time someone comes to the attention of NHS or other support services they may already be dealing with complex and entrenched problems.