Stigma

With mental health issues people can feel stigma exists… too ashamed to talk to others about their problems.  I felt very alone in my suffering.  But with my care co-ordinator I found that I could talk about my problems without having to feel ashamed and it made me feel like a normal person again.

1 in 4 statisticMental illness is not uncommon and can affect one in four people in their lifetime, with psychosis affecting about one in a hundred people.

Despite this, psychosis is not commonly understood by the general public; and while there are campaigns underway to raise awareness, there is concern that at the moment negative stereotypes and a misunderstanding of psychosis may add to a person’s distress, or cause them to delay getting help.

The easy way would be for me to wish I never had a mental illness, but nothing’s ever easy and it makes me who I am, even though it’s very hard. I am who I am and I should be happy and proud for everything else I have. People can take me as I am or not at all because it’s a part of me that I shouldn’t be shamed of. I may have bipolar but bipolar doesn’t have me.

It is not unusual to worry about who to speak to if you suspect that you are having mental health difficulties. It can be hard to know how people will respond, especially if you want to check with them that what you are worrying about is realistic.

However, speaking to someone you trust about your problems can be a big help. It could be a parent or carer, a teacher or lecturer, a partner or close friend, or your doctor; it can be anyone that you think will listen to you and will try to offer you support.

They might also be able to help you understand whether you need extra help and support you to get in touch with a specialist mental health service like ours.

Getting help is the right thing to do

I always tell people when we first meet, to just tell me everything; I’ve heard so much, very little surprises me. Once they realise that I’m really listening to them and not judging them they are already well on their way to feeling better.- EIT Worker

If you find it hard to talk to others, then please get in touch with us directly. At the Early Intervention Team, you can speak to us about any concerns you have about the symptoms you are experiencing. We won’t judge you; and what you tell us is in confidence.

About Us page provides details of how you can get in touch to speak to us about your concerns.

Confidentiality page explains our policy on confidentiality.

There are other organisations that actively tackle stigma such as:

Time to Change website explains what’s happening to challenge and reduce stigma towards mental illness. It also contains some great videos which you might find helpful.
Visit the Time To Change website link
© 2013 Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
Getting help is the right thing to do