My Mental Health Story
Posted by zoeagnew
3rd Nov 2019

Hiya everyone . My name is ZoŽ and this is just a small version of my mental health story . I got diagnosed with anxiety and depression in 2015 when I was 24... but I know I had been suffering for years before . During my late teens I went through something very traumatic ... something Iíll maybe discuss one day as Iím not ready to right now ...but I know thatís what started of my depression . Lots of other reasons with difficult relationships with family , boyfriends and friendships to had a big part to play in it to . When I first got diagnosed It was such a relief ... a relief that I FINALLY got a name to how I was feeling . I had always been the life and the soul of the party .. always socialising and always smiling but I had this other side to me that I kept hidden from everyone . A deep sadness inside
Of me . Throughout my early twenties I blocked out a lot of my insecurities and sadness with alcohol . Alcohol gave me the confidence and the ability to push through the times I thought I couldnít get through . Little did anyone know most nights I came home from nights out I would be in tears . Tears of utter sadness and just feel such an emptiness . I felt a lot of pressure to be the person everyone thought I was ... someone who is always out partying and laughing . I felt an almost shame of this depression I felt inside me . After I was diagnosed I still hid it from my friends and some family .. I felt I couldnít talk about it . It wasnít until I eventually calmed down a bit with my partying that people started to notice a real change in me . I then decided instead of telling everyone and explaining to everyone individually I would write a blog about it ... so I did . I posted it online and all my friends and family and even strangers read it and the feedback I got was mostly positive and I felt I had had a massive weight lifted from me . I felt so happy that everyone finally knew . Unfortunately throughout the past few years since speaking so openly about it I have lost a lot of friendships ... people who just didnít understand it and didnít try to understand . I had to start saying no to a lot of things due to things getting very dark for me and I still felt a massive stigma attached to it and felt I couldnít use my mental health as an ďexcuse ď . I then started distancing myself from the people in my life who just didnít understand it ... I just isolated away and only surrounded myself with people who were kind and supportive to me . The past few years especially I have struggled so much with my anxiety and depression ... Iíve felt very lonely with it . I have gotten a lot of help with it and I feel really proud of myself that I can talk so honest and open about it ... bit like what I am doing now :) ! I regularly write a mental health blog and this really helps me feel less alone with it and I get a lot of support from people with it . Unfortunately there is still so much stigma attached to mental health . It still isnít taken as seriously as physical health and I really struggle with it . Every day for me is a daily battle ... it may not be visible for people to see but it is there inside me every day . Some days are of course better than others . Since working on myself every day I do now see the positives of life , I know if a bad day comes that the feelings do pass and the sun does shine again . The days where I feel that struggle to even get out the door in the mornings I just try and take it in little steps . Iíve gotten help with it and I now keep my circle small . I have to for protective of myself . I feel very very alone sometimes and feel I still have to explain why I can be so down and low . I am a very sociably person who laughs every day but nobody is just one thing ... we all have different parts to ourselves . My depression and anxiety is only one part of me and what I work on every day is to not let it take over my whole life , I wonít let it stop me fulfilling my dreams as much as it tries to hold me back . I have to just take it one day at a time . Iíd really like to thank you for taking the time to read my story ... itís a small version of it but I hope it helps some of you . Itís a real honour to write this for sanes website ... a charity very close to my heart ! Big love and hugs ZoŽ xxxxx 💛🌈💛

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