One of the cruelest features of depression is that it can trick the sufferer into thinking that their pain in permanent, and that they're destined to be miserable for the rest of their life. Your role as a close friend or loved one is to offer them hope by reminding them that if they get the right help, they'll be able to recover and feel well again.
Sleep deprivation is a key cause of Toddler's Back, when you have kids you just don't get to rest like you used to - fact. Our daughter is no fan of sleeping, and despite being a perfect little angel (well almost) during daylight hours, she turns into something of a diva at night. It was during a particularly difficult night time shift this week, when my Toddler's Back really struck.
I genuinely think that I was as excited about Becky and Neil expecting Niamh as I was when Carolyn was expecting Anna and Iris. And I don't mean that in a dismissive way about my girls. I love them completely. But I remember Becky telling us that she was pregnant and it was incredible.
Pregnancy is supposed to be the most wonderful time of a woman's life. I, however, liken the condition to that of being invaded by a parasite. Reading that sentence back to myself makes me feel like a terrible person. And very worried that there is something wrong with me. This is me sharing my dirty secret via my laptop: I don't ever want to be a mother.
Everyone on this planet has a childhood story about low self-esteem and we often don't realise how damaging they can be in later life. Even the great and the good like Jen Lawrence, Jessie J and Rebecca Adlington have all come out saying they had troubled teen years. Low self-esteem is a major cause of eating disorders, depression, anxiety and addictions.
If I was to go and try and get my 'gayness' reversed it would probably open up a plethora of Pandora's boxes. There would be demons, there would be horror, there would be sin, lustfulness and an absolute shed load of glitter, feathers, fun and debauchery.
As a private tutor, I often work with autistic spectrum children in English. Many of them 'don't get' English. They might struggle to understand what they're supposed to do for homework and can become so frustrated they give up. Though they may not be dyslexic, they might not read...
This week, I found myself in the firing line of an extremely controversial story published on the Mail Online and have had to endure over a thousand comments questioning my integrity, my parenting and my sheer existence. To say the last 24 hours has been traumatic would be an understatement.
Breastfeeding her child in public had a young woman anonymously labelled a 'tramp'. This in turn led to a number of well attended mass breastfeeding gatherings throughout the UK. A great show of solidarity, women highlighting their right to breastfeed in public.
An 'interfering mother-in-law' is one of society's favourite stereotypes. The term 'mother-in-law' sounds negative and criticising even before anything is known about the individual themselves. Mothers and daughters-in-law often find it particularly difficult to get along. What is the secret of those who can overcome the stereotype, and build a friendship with their 'DIL'?
Harriet Laura Amy Leah was born at 37 weeks on 16th November 2012 by c-section. "She was laying very awkwardly" explains her mum Zena, "doing the splits and her cord was presenting, had my waters gone the cord would have been the first thing out and she would have most probably suffocated"
Why on earth are we using rewards? Is it the way we were conditioned as children? Always dependent on praise and positive judgements from our parents, teachers, friends - and later on in life, partners and bosses. And what happens to us when we don't get that praise? How do we feel then?
One huge fact that we will never reveal is that we are lonely. We are often on the outside looking in, looking in at both society and our own child, unable in a way to reach both. We are isolated from society due to our caring role, lack of financial support and understanding. We are isolated from our child as we are never truly allowed 'inside'.
Here is the contradiction: Society wants men to spend more time with their kids and families (believe me, at least once a week I get a comment like "Oh it's good to see daddy being in charge" when in public), but employers and government do next to nothing to support them. I believe we need some fundamental changes here...
When we speak of conflict, where things get nasty and personal, where it's not just words that are used as weapons but bodies and objects around, then we wreak havoc in the lives of our children.
Involvement of parents and family members has a more likelihood of bringing a better spouse with matching backgrounds in terms of family and upbringing - not just on external features. Morally upright young people would obviously look for morally upright life-partners and they would go the extra mile to find a reasonable match.