Yay! I got nominated for the Liebster Award

Yes, I accept the Liebster Award, thank you!

Grey circle with Liebster Award written on it, surrounded by pink spots on white background
Discovering new blogs

I’d like to thank Christina from ckyranis.com for nominating me for the Liebster award, and I accept it with gratitude. Christina is a Certified Professional Coach, and specialises in relationship coaching. Why not pay a visit to Christina’s fabulous blog where. by the process of self discovery, she helps people make healthier, more loving and fulfilling relationship choices.

As you all know, I’m quite fond of the blogging awards because it’s a great way of meeting new bloggers, finding out about them and their lives and becoming virtual friends.

Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you, and provide a link to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you.
  • Share 11 facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 5-11 other bloggers.
  • Ask your nominees 11 questions.
  • Notify your nominees once you have uploaded your post

11 questions for you to answer

  1. What is your greatest life lesson so far? Understanding that I was not to blame for what happened to me
  2. What is your favorite pass time? Now — it’s probably blogging and other than that, spending time with our 2 beautiful grandchildren 🙂
  3. What has been your greatest challenge in the past month? Having to stay indoors in a one bedroom flat with hubby — seeing other people out and about!
  4. What is your ideal romantic relationship look like? Exactly like the one I have; loving, mutual trust, respect and understanding and being able to laugh with and at each other 🙂
  5. Share one thing you’ve never shared before about yourself. Me and a pal sold raffle tickets for some fake charity when we were about 9 – one house we visited, the lady recognised my pal as being the window cleaner’s daughter so she told on us! We had to go back round about 5 doors to return the money
  6. Whats your definition of friendship? Almost the same as romantic one lol
  7. Which is your best tv series? Does it have to be just the one? I loved Luther, Bosch and Casualty
  8. Whats your favorite food to eat? Mmmm! I just love food but favourite’s got to be seafood and fish (monkfish), calamari — getting peckish just thinking about it 😉
  9. Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate — every time!
  10. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Introvert with extrovert traits?? When I’m with my really close friends and family, I’m always the one that makes everyone laugh and play games
  11. What are you most afraid of? While I know it’s inevitable, the thought of my mum or dad dying! They’re both 78 this year and are relatively fit – I want to spend as much time with them, either in person or in our virtual world via Facetime 🙂

Eleven things about me

  1. Okay, here goes, I’m young and in my fifties now
  2. Other than my physical disability and mental illness, in the last ten years, I’ve had no other ailments like coughs, flu or broken bones – yay!
  3. I have Transverse Myelitis (TM), which is not unlike Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  4. I have two gorgeously amazing adult sons who have 5 degrees, 2 Masters and 1 PhD between them (proud mummy moment)
  5. I have a very special partner who always looks out for me and looks after me
  6. I love travelling and have had some real fun holidays in the States, Cuba, Egypt, Mexico, Portugal, Spain, Gibraltar, France skiing, South of France, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia (to name but a few lol) and my favourite of all time, Israel, where I spent a year on a kibbutz
  7. Prior to becoming physically disabled, I worked as Ward Manager in Mental Health and I loved it — for me, it was the best job ever
  8. I’ve put on weight since I stopped working — I’m not saying how much tho 😉 suffice to say, I’ve got that muffin top thing going on
  9. My favourite times are with family and friends, whether it’s at the beach, around a pool or in the garden, eating fantastic food and enjoying lots of wine
  10. I was born in Scotland, where my mum and dad, my brother and his wife and twin boys, my sister and her hubby together with their five children and partners with lots of little kiddies, all still live – so I visit often 🙂
  11. My older sister lives in the USA so I’ve been able to visit her in both Houston and Philadelphia

My nominees are

  1. Carol Anne @ therapybits.com/
  2. Ayesha @ bloggingfilter.com/
  3. Heather @ unrulyneurons.com/
  4. opane.home.blog/
  5. Arisha @ mybookofhonour.wordpress.com/

I hope you’ll all participate and I’m looking forward to reading your answers so we all get to know a bit more about you.

There are so many amazing bloggers out there but I’ve just recently come across the 5 blogs above. I’d appreciate you taking some time to check out their wonderful blogs.

My questions are

  1. Tell us a bit about your blog and why you started it
  2. Tell us a bit about you
  3. What are three things you like about yourself?
  4. What is the one thing about you that you dislike and why?
  5. If you could share your last meal with anybody who would it be, alive or dead?
  6. Where do you live and what’s it famous for?
  7. When were you last in education and what did you study?
  8. Who are you in lockdown with?
  9. What are your thoughts on blogging awards?
  10. What do you enjoy and not enjoy about the blogging community?
  11. What’s the weather like where you are?

I look forward to seeing who participates and reading their answers. In the meantime, just letting you know I’ve been unwell — yes, again! So hopefully, I’ve managed to respond to your your much appreciated comments and also to read and comment on your blogs. If not, bear with me, I will get round to it cos I’m on the mend.

Help?

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Clipart.com

I’m wondering which post to complete next? Should I continue with “My psychotic journey” (it’s been a while since my last episode here) or with “Childhood sexual abuse”? Or do something more uplifting peeps. I’d appreciate your input.

10 Myths and facts about mental illness

As a former mental health nurse and ward manager for many years in one of London’s busiest mental health settings I was used to the many misconceptions people (including carers, visitors, family and friends) had. Here are my top 10.

  1. Mental illness won’t affect me. FACT – Mental illnesses are surprisingly common; they do not discriminate—they can affect anyone. Approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year. In England, 1 in 6 people report experiencing a common mental health problem, such as anxiety and depression, in any given week. (mind.org.uk)
  2. People with mental illness are just weak. FACT: Mental health disorders are not a personal choice nor are they caused by personal weakness. Mental illness is a combination of biological, psychological, and social factors. Research has shown genetic and biological factors are associated with schizophrenia, depression, and alcoholism. Social influences, such as loss of a loved one or a job, can also contribute to the development of various disorders.
  3. You can tell when someone has a mental illness. FACT: Many people think you can see when someone has a mental illness—maybe they think that a mentally ill person looks different, acts crazy, or always comes across as depressed or anxious. This is not true. Anyone can have a mental illness, even if they look completely normal, seem happy, or have a lot of money, a great job and a big house. (redbookmag.com)
  4. People don’t recover from mental illnesses. FACT: Recovery is absolutely possible. The illness might not go away forever but lots of people with mental health problems still work, have families and lead full lives. Recovering from mental illness includes not only getting better, but achieving a meaningful and satisfying life. Being told that you have a mental illness is not the end of the world. With help and support, people can recover and achieve their life’s ambitions.
  5. People with mental health issues can’t work. FACT:  With one in four people affected by mental illness, you probably work with someone with a mental health problem. Many people can and do work with mental health issues, such as depression or anxiety, with little impact on productivity. However, like any illness, there are times when the person isn’t able to work due to the severity of the condition.
  6. People with schizophrenia are violent. FACT: Modern media has been guilty of regularly portraying people with mental illness as violent. In truth, this is rarely the case. People with mental health problems are much more likely to be the victim of violence. While research has shown there is an increased risk of violence in those living with schizophrenia and anti-social personality disorder, in general, mental health sufferers are more at risk of being attacked or harming themselves. Official statistics consistently show that most violent crimes and homicides are committed by people who don’t have mental health problems.
  7. People with mental health problems are lazy and should just snap out of it. FACT: This is certainly not true. There’s lots reasons why some people might look lazy as many experience fatigue and lethargy as side effects of their medication but this is not laziness. People cannot just snap out of a mental health problem and lots of people may need help to get better. This help might include medication, counselling and lots of support from their care team, friends and family.
  8. People with mental illness rely on medication. FACT: Medication can be used on a short-term basis, especially for depression and anxiety, but for other mental illnesses, medication is used long-term. Mental illness is not like a physical illness because it can’t always be treated with one single medication. Often, a group of medications is needed for someone with a mental health disorder i.e. antipsychotics and antidepressants together with antiemetic medication to treat the side effects of antipsychotics.
  9. Mental illness is “all in your head. It’s not a real medical problem. FACT: There’s still a common belief that someone with anxiety can “just calm down” or someone with depression can “snap out of it” like they can pick how and when to have an episode come or go. That’s simply not true. There are very real physical symptoms. Someone who has depression may see changes in appetite, libido and sleep pattern and someone with anxiety might feel breathless, have palpitations and feel nauseous or dizzy.
  10. Asking someone about suicidal thoughts and feelings might make them do it. FACT: If someone says they are thinking about suicide, it can be very distressing. You might not know what to do to help, whether to take talk of suicide seriously, or if your talking about it will make the situation worse. However, asking about suicidal thoughts or feelings won’t push someone into doing something self-destructive. In fact, offering an opportunity to talk about feelings may reduce the risk of acting on suicidal feelings (Mayoclinic.org).

Unfortunately these myths about mental health problems often contribute to the stigma that many people still face. It’s so important that we challenge these myths so we can understand the real facts around a mental illness.

If you have had any of the feeling or described above, please find someone to talk to. You can always talk to your GP in confidence or look up your local branch of the Samaritans. You don’t have to suffer alone.

Do you have any questions about any of the above? I am always willing to offer support and information.

Have you ever had to and how would you challenge a friend or family member about these myths?