• 5 WHYZ,  Mental Matters

    5 Reasons Why I’m Grateful For My Anxiety

    Let’s be honest, anxiety can be a real pain in the arse. It’s not easy overthinking and worrying over pretty much everything I do and at times, it can leave me feeling pretty isolated. But what if the negativity surrounding my mental health was flipped on its head? What if I’m grateful for how anxiety has changed me? It’s these questions that have caused me to reflect and be thankful for the important role that anxiety has, and always will, play in my life. It has taught me about compassion To this day, I still find that some people completely misunderstand my anxiety. Sometimes it can be a hurtful comment…

  • Editors Picks,  Mental Matters,  Parenting

    Being A Stay At Home Mum Is Making Me Depressed

    I’m writing this post on the back of a relatively sleepless week. We have two children (aged 5 & 1) and currently they are trying to end me via sleep deprivation. One wont go to bed and dicks about endlessly and the other will wake up intermittently throughout the night and vice a versa. So, I’m definitely at my worst as I write this, definitely on a low. Lack of sleep of course makes everything worse and I know that in a day or a week, things wont feel quite so bleak and I will be able to pull myself together a bit. But its been like this for months…

  • 5 WHYZ,  Mental Matters,  Parenting

    Five Reasons Why We Should Build Resilience In Our Children

    It is a sad fact that mental health problems affect about 1 in 10 children, including depression and anxiety. Which is often a direct response to what is happening in their lives.  What is even more alarming is 70% of children have not had appropriate interventions.   The emotional well-being of children is just as paramount as their physical health.  Good mental health will help children build skills to develop their resilience; this will help them to cope with whatever life throws at them, making them happy and healthy adults. So what does this term resilience mean? There have been various definitions of resilience, the one I like the most is…

  • Editors Picks,  Mental Matters,  Speak Up

    The S Word

    So many are afraid to say it, aren’t they? That word. That whispered taboo. Why do we dance around it? Why don’t we just talk about it? What exactly is it that are we so afraid of? Why are we so afraid to hear of it and so afraid to open up about it? Suicide. It steals so many lives. Every day. Every minute. It devastates families, seizes lives yet to really live, leaves children motherless, women as widows, friends feeling the blame and questioning why they didn’t see the signs. Why is it after someone has taken their life that we begin to pour out support and preach about…

  • Life,  Mental Matters

    Quote Of The Month: “If you don’t ask, you don’t get.”

    If I had a pound for every time I heard this saying growing up – I’d actually have enough money to never want again. I can’t even reference this quote since it’s probably been around since the beginning of time! Although, the world wide web has narrowed it down to two suspects: Mahatma Ghandi and Stevie Wonder. I think I know who I’d put my money on! Anyway, why did I pick this quote? Because it’s relevant as fuck. Between 2016 and 2017 I suffered from a number of mental illnesses. It took me to a seriously dark place that I never hope to return to and every day I’m…

  • Editors Picks,  Life,  Mental Matters

    Far From The Tree?

    My name is Jemma. I am 35 and I am crazy. Not in like a “Wurrr! Mad for it! Drink 10 pints on a night out and streak down the high street” kind of crazy (although maybe in 2002 that would have been the case). I mean like neurosis, paranoia, depression, over thinking, anxiety kind of crazy. I have no memory of being anything other than bonkers, feeling different, out of place, even as a very small child. I have questioned who I am, why I am, my sexuality, my intelligence and, more often than not, my own sanity. I have made two attempts on my own life. Neither of…

  • Editors Picks,  Mental Matters,  Speak Up

    There Is No Age Limit On Self Harm

    The first time my mum saw the angry red welts on my arms she walked away from me, her head held down and tears in her eyes. I guess she didn’t understand the whys and to be honest, neither did I. I don’t remember the first time I drew a blunt pair of scissors (my favoured instrument of pain) across my arms or legs. I knew that to make sure I didn’t need medical attention I’d have to use something that wouldn’t necessarily cause the skin to open and bleed but the pain and the raised red welts it left was enough of a satisfying outcome for me. I didn’t…

  • Mental Matters

    How Work Stress Affects Family Life & 5 Ways to Lower It

    Family arguments, early bedtimes, plans not going ahead, does this sound familiar? Well don’t worry because this is everyday family life for a lot of us. I would argue that 80% of these situations stem from stress at work. Ever heard of “The Chain of Screaming”? I believe that term came from an episode of “How I Met Your Mother” but the general idea has been around since the beginning of time. Usually around deadline time pressure in the “office” builds up. This is made worse by somebody calling in sick or somebody leaving (which always happens when you least bloody want it to, right?) so your boss gets stressed…

  • Mental Matters,  Parenting

    I’m The Parent I Wish I’d Had

    When I tell people I cut my mother out of my life they look at me like I’ve gone mad, they imagine some terrible crime has been committed or that she must be on the drink, or drugs, or both and that I must be protecting my children in some way. It’s been five years since I last saw her bar the odd glance in the supermarket and it might shock you if I tell you, she’s not an addict, she’s a millionaire, she’s educated and has never so much as smoked a cigarette let alone tried drugs. She owns several beautiful houses and in her youth dreamed of being…

  • Mental Matters

    All The Times My Health Anxiety Has Killed Me

    I’ve spent the last 72 hours convinced that I am dying. So convinced in fact, that I’ve run through all the resulting scenarios in my head. The “I’m sorry Mrs Aslett, but you only have 3 months to live” diagnosis, the leaving our house for the last time moment, the insisting on keeping the kids away and sheltered during my final days talk with my husband. The panic, panic, panic. Because this week I have breast cancer. Two weeks ago its was fibromyalgia. For most of the Summer it was bowel cancer. Six months ago it was cervical cancer. I could go on and on. For years in fact. I can trace…

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