Say Thank You

We are truly blessed to have this blog from the wonderful Tilly who is a medical student at Cardiff University and we are proud to partner and work with her on many, many projects.


Sometime during my third year of medical school, I travelled up to London with friends for a weekend away. We were having a really nice day visiting the Tower of London and had booked to get the train back home to Cardiff that evening. All was going swimmingly and then something changed. My friend’s boyfriend, who had accompanied us last minute, offered to drive us all back home in his car. Not only was it a very kind offer, it made ten times more sense than getting the train. There were rail works going on that day and what was normally a two-hour trip was instead going to be closer to four. I should have been grateful. I should have said, “Yes, please. That would be lovely. Thank you very much”. Instead, I got angry and then I cried. How dare he try and change the plan last minute? What about all that money I had spent on the train? Why was he even here in the first place? All these thoughts, and more like them, surfaced uncontrollably in my brain. Irrational and ugly, and yet impossible to ignore. Although part of me knew they were a major overreaction, the other part of me couldn’t stop thinking them. I knew I should say yes. I wanted to say no. I knew I should say thank you. I wanted to say go away. I can’t remember what I actually said. I think perhaps it was something along the lines of “I’ll think about it.”

I felt completely and utterly trapped. I wanted more than anything not to be there. I wanted to be alone. I wanted the rest of the world to just disappear and leave me in peace for once. Everyone could tell I was irritable. Well, everyone except me. Whilst my friend and his boyfriend continued into the Tower of London, probably rather irked by my attitude, I stood at the entrance and sobbed to the friend who’d stayed behind with me. She was used to it by now. It was not the first meltdown I’d had, and it certainly wasn’t the last.

Once I had got it all out of my system, things suddenly seemed to make more sense. I felt like the weight of this impossible decision had been lifted. I got the lift home. I said, “Yes please”. I said, “That would be lovely”. I said, “Thank you very much”.

I said sorry.

Not only did I feel very guilty about crying on my friend’s shoulder again, I felt extremely embarrassed about how I had acted. This was how I always felt after these meltdowns, anxiety attacks… whatever it is you want to call them. Over the last few years, I have learnt to recognise the signs that I am becoming irritable. I can take a step back. I can take deep breaths. I can remind myself that I’m seeing the world through a haze of my own emotions. If that doesn’t work, then I can remove myself from the situation before I boil over.

Of course, every now and then I slip up. In these situations, there is one very simple thing that helps more than I ever could have imagined. It is the one bit of advice I would give anyone in the same situation. Learn to say, “thank you” and not, “sorry”. Now, I’m not saying don’t apologise for things you said or did in the heat of the moment. That is different. If you feel you have apologies to make for that, which I often do, then go ahead and say sorry. However, this is very different to saying sorry for the anxiety attack itself. It is very different from saying sorry for crying on your shoulder again. I’m sorry for being such a nuisance. I’m sorry for being such a burden. There is something about saying sorry that means It was my fault. I have done something wrong. Just the act in itself makes you feel guilty, and the guilt brings your mood down, and it heightens your anxiety, and then you get more irritable, and then you have another anxiety attack, and then you say sorry again…. You get the gist. But you can break that cycle.

Say thank you for being there. Thank you for listening. Thank you for caring.

Remember, you are trying your best. Every week, every day, every hour that you don’t have an anxiety attack is a great achievement. You should be giving yourself credit for that, not punishing yourself for times you can’t quite hold it off.

And anyone worth having around should understand that.


BDP Sucks

We have an amazing new blog from our anon blogger.


There is a side to me that most people I know don’t see.

Only a handful of my closest friends. This hidden side doesn’t want to get out of bed in the mornings because facing the day can be too painful, no matter how much the other side fakes a smile. The hidden side goes out and socialises but doesn’t want to, because it’s safer to stay at home. It tells you no matter what you do it’s not good enough as it compares you to those around you. This side is making you feel alone even though you’re surrounded by people. It makes you push the people that matter far away so that you won’t get hurt and it prevents you from fulfilling a normal life when it decides it wants to be in charge. It takes your emotions and intensifies them so that each one you feel 10x more than normal, be it happiness, anger, sadness, frustration you name it. Most importantly this side is misunderstood, and very little people know about it.

This side is BPD and it sucks

Going to London to buy heat magazine!


Ok, you got me, I am not going to buy heat magazine but I am going to London


I am on the train to London and although the anxiousness has subsided dramatically from when I woke up this morning I am sat here writing to distract. I have the plan in my head.

download (1).jpegReading, I get my make up out, moisturise and then put on foundation over my acne spots, a bit of highlighter, eye shizz and lippie, now I am over thinking again. What colour is appropriate for Parliament red or dark. I mean is dark to teenager goth and is red to in your face. My life! My brain I mean really who cares!

Today I have the amazing honour of attending the Houses of Parliament to talk to the members about Post Natal Mental Health. I couldn’t be more in shock. When I first started speaking out my one intention was to help some people just realise that they were normal. That has amazingly grown to me being involved in Welsh Government papers and now this.

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I have no idea what to expect. I have no idea what is going to happen. People ask me if that sets off my anxiety and the honest answer is no. You see when you are talking about you. About your experience, your truth then there is no wrong answer. Whatever I say today about my experiences are my experiences.

Nearly at Didcot now and I have done my morning check of work and done some things that I have needed too for a while. Call planned for when I get off the train at Reading and route to meet with the others who are attending today also planned. Wow, so far, so good!

Falling Into Relapse

Another amazing blog from our amazing anon blogger. We really love them! 


You know that dream we’ve all had at least once where you’re falling and you jolt awake?

Imagine now that you’re awake but falling, but you manage to grip onto a rock. All ten fingers start off on the rock hanging on for dear life. At the top of the cliff is ‘normality’ and at the bottom is relapse. One by one your fingers lose their grip and you’re desperately clinging on.

You’ve got your friends and family waiting at the top cheering you on, telling you to keep going, but you’ve also got those that are true down the bottom to catch you if you do fall.

This is where I am at the moment, I’ve got around 3 fingers clinging on but things are trying to pull me down. It gets tough fighting every day, but we do it because the alternative is worse. You don’t really get tired of life you just get tired of fighting, but as I’m told: You only lose the battle when you stop fighting and tough times don’t last, tough people do. Both of these sayings are what we need to keep telling ourselves.

Often we don’t know how to help ourselves so how do others know how to? I don’t know, but the true ones will be there anyway; if you fall they’ll catch you, if you don’t,and you make it back to the top then they’ll celebrate with you. Remember that when you feel lost, remember your support network. I’m trying because I’m told it gets better.


I’m a survivor

Our anon blogger has done it again!


download“I’m a survivor, I’m gonna make it, I will survive, keep on surviving”

Now that I’ve got that song in your head I’m going to explain why these lyrics are ME.

My last blogs have been a bit doom and gloom but here’s one of me on the other side (almost). I’m not going to say I won’t relapse or indulge in any behaviours that I’ve used as coping mechanisms but what I am saying is that I’ve got some much needed respite from it.

Part of this could be down to meeting my boyfriend, but a huge part is also down to me. I don’t want this to be a massive post of me bigging myself up, but ultimately I am the primary reason for getting to where I am now.

images (2)As the song lyrics say, I’m going to make it, I am a survivor and I’ll keep on surviving.

Mental health is being spoken about more now, but people still don’t realise how much of a killer it is. Suicide very often isn’t a ‘choice’, when you’re in that situation, there is no choice about it, it feels like death is the only outcome.

I’m lucky now to say that I was in that situation, but I spoke out about it, not publicly, but a few of my close friends knew, and I only got close to acting twice. So this is how I can say I’m a survivor, and I will keep on surviving.

images (1)I am 100% proud to be a survivor and 100% grateful that I am still here. I never wanted to die, not really, I just saw no other way, but thankfully I do now. Bad days will still happen but with the right treatment and support networks, the consequences of these days can be minimal.

Problem with open door policies

This was written by an amazing friend of mine who doesn’t want to be named. Enjoy.


download.jpegWorld is becoming a lot more understanding and a lot more tolerant of people with mental health issues. On the surface this is a good thing in fact even if you dig deeper it’s a very good thing. However, not all the articles “how to love someone with anxiety” “10 ways to help deal with depression” I helpful to everyone.

Image-1.jpgI recently saw a Facebook status from someone being very supportive of people with mental health issues saying that you had an open door policy, and that anyone could call her at any time for a cup of tea and a chat if they felt like it was necessary and as someone who is suffering with mental health issues a lot of my friends have made similar offers. The offers of “I’m always here if you need me” or “my phone is always on” do not go unappreciated. In fact, for that brief moment in time you actually feel better like there is some support but you can get through this and people are rooting for you. And I have no reason to doubt anyone who says these things means it. But if the worst came to the worst I turned up on the doorstep I would be welcomed us a member of the family and given whatever support I required until I was ready to carry on. However, these offers of a shoulder to cry on, and ear to listen or a safe haven away from the monsters that haunt you are not easily taken.

Right now, I’m alone. I’ve had a bad day, I’m not in the best of situations (But I know Damm well it could be worse) and I’ve let down people close to me who I care about. No, I’m not just saying that I feel like I’ve let people down who are close to me and that I care about, I actually have. That is a conversation I had to have today. And right now all I want is a little reassurance that things Will get better and to be told images.jpegI’m not as much of a prick as I think I am. But I am alone. There is no one physically nearby to talk to. And even if there was this is something deeply personal to bring up. But that’s okay because my phonebook is full of contacts, Full of friends and colleagues who have made the offer above an open door a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen. But they all have lives. They all have their own problems. They all have bigger and more important things going on and what they don’t need right now is someone looking for a little self-assurance. At least, this is how it feels. I know full well that if I called or text the right people they would be supportive some of them would even jump in the car and come down to see me to make sure I was alright. But part of the problems of being depressed and having mental health issues is feeling like you’re a download (1).jpegburden on those around you. Do you know that if they ever came to you with a similar problem you would welcome them with open arms and nothing would be too much to do for them to make them feel better. But when you need that kind of treatment, that kind of reassurance, all that kind of support, it’s suddenly too much to expect from anyone else. And so I’m alone. I know will get better, I know this feeling will go away and I’ll be back to the way I should be. But for now I’m alone and all the offers of an ear or a shoulder make me feel worse because I know they are meant with good intentions and I know they are sincere but I can’t except them and become more of a burden on my friends and family that I already feel I am. I don’t know what the answer is. Other people in my position may find the open door policy is more of a comfort. I know I do when the offer is made. But when it actually comes down to it, it makes me feel more isolated because if I except the offers I’ll be burdening more people.

And this is the problem with open door policy is. If you want to help someone, really want to help someone struggling with a mental illness, the only way we can do that is the band together and actually start the conversation about mental health.

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Dating With Mental Illness Third-wheeling It

Another amazing blog from our anon Bipolar blogger


Unfortunately with me at the moment, although I’m in a better place, my mental illness is the 3rd wheel, three’s a crowd has never been truer.

I met this guy that for once I’m interested in and he’s interested in me. The first date although nerve wracking went really well and I made an effort with myself which says a lot. It went well enough that two days later I met him again and just enjoyed his company. So we arranged another date for the coming Friday.

He said he’d surprise me, but I found out the surprise before hand because surprises make me nervous. He picked me up from work in his makeshift camper van and we went to grab food and went up the hill to watch the sunset and then snuggle under the stars with a blanket. I felt so comfortable around him and we had a great time. But with all that something was still niggling at me. He’s going to see my scars, he’s going to see me for my illness and not me. He’s going to see the scars and run and that’s without even mentioning the Bipolar Disorder.

Since seeing him Friday the last two days have been very up and down, with my thoughts being a whirlwind. Part of me really wants to see where this could go, but part of me is saying cut my losses now because once he knows it will save me getting hurt before I develop too many feelings for him.

The truth is, it’s not going to go away, unfortunately it’s part of me now, it’s the third wheel I carry with me, sometimes it’s not even visible but sometimes it has taken over my life for a few days, he’d have to take the good with the bad, and hopefully when I live well with bipolar, he could too. I could live my life scared to tell him but all I have to do is educate him and then for both of us it’s less scary. Who knows, he might be fighting a battle too.