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Wednesday 7th December 2016
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Mental health sufferers ‘ashamed’

10th April 2007

Half of those suffering mental health problems do not want their friends to find out.

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According to the Mental Health Foundation, people with mental distress are too ashamed to tell their friends despite research which suggests that friends often offer incredible support to those suffering mental health problems.  The Mental Health Foundation survey found that four-fifths of the UK population know at least two people who have suffered some form of mental distress and over 70% said their friend’s problems did not put their friendship under strain with over 40% saying it actually made their relationship stronger. Over 60% of people with mental health issues said their friends were helpful to them and over 40% rated the support of their friends over and above that of their families and GPs.  However, half of those who had supported someone through a mental health problem said they felt they lacked sufficient knowledge to effectively help their friend. Nearly 75% said they had experienced frustration because there was no simple solution to their friend’s problems.

Dr Andrew McCulloch, chief executive of the Mental Health Foundation, said, "Friendships are very important for good mental well-being, yet people can feel ashamed or embarrassed to tell their friends about how they feel, and friends are sometimes unsure of how exactly they can help.â€?  The charity has produced a booklet designed to support those with mental health problems and their friends.

 

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Anonymous

Wednesday 11th April 2007 @ 18:58

I suffered from psychosis about five years ago, I had a complete mental breakdown. Prior to that just a few weeks before, I had a minor stroke, brought on by stress, which was all linked to the same cause. Apart from weekly visits by a psychiatrist, I never wanted anyone to help me, not even my Mum. I found it hard enough to cope with, without being fussed over. My psychosis was brought on by the death of two long term partners, fourteen yrs apart from each other. I found out then, that I had been an alcoholic since my first partner died. I was admitted to hospital for a week, as I had not been eating or drinking anything for weeks, except of course the alcohol. My stomach lining was so badly burned by the alcohol that my stomach would not keep anything down, not even a sip of water, but the alcohol seemed to stay down easily. When I came out of hospital, I told them that my mum was going to take care of me, otherwise they were going to send me for months to a rehab place miles away. Before I went into hospital, my mental state was at the point that even my mum wanted me sectioned for my own good. I am now perfectly healthy, and it took me just five months to get my life back together. I think it would have taken me a lot longer if I was relying on other people, also I think sometimes others can put a dampner on ideas that you may have to help yourself. I just did what I wanted, when I wanted to. I spent money on changing my whole appearance, bought new clothes, new make up. I just threw everything I had before away, and I know if my Mum had been with me she would have been worrying about the money I was spending, and that worry wouldn't have helped me at all, and would probably have prevented me from doing a lot of what I did. Everything I did made me feel really good! I knew I had to get better as nobody else could do it for me, I had a job waiting for me, people relying on me. Luckily I had my own house, ten miles from my family, and I only had me to worry about, no dependants, so I could just shut myself away and do what I had to do without any interference. And although my mum phoned everyday, she knew she had to keep away. I am very proud of what I achieved, and my whole outlook on life and my whole personality has changed. I am a confident, outgoing person who never worries or gets stressed about anything anymore. I was 42 yrs old when I went through this. Its great to eventually have a life again.


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