Mental health awareness and combating stigma

Stamp out stigma
Help stamp out stigma

As an ex mental health nurse and ward manager, and someone who’s experienced mental illness, I remain extremely passionate about raising mental health awareness and fighting the stigma, the social exclusion and discrimination that come with it.

“None of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can all do small things, with great love, and together we can do something wonderful.”

– Mother Teresa

I’m a determined advocate of mental illness and I’d love you to share this journey with me, getting our message out there, telling our MP’s, governments, leaders and current service providers what we need. Shouting out about mental illness, encouraging others to talk about their mental health. Let’s all open up, reach out, and fight to get the right treatment and support we need and deserve.

I’d also like to share with you some fascinating and inspiring but often distressing and disturbing insights into mental health nursing — raw and honest writing about the things many people don’t know or don’t want to know.

Secrets from the mental health wards

Mental illness; negative thoughts and feelings

I’ll be writing about my nursing practice, whispering secrets about my days on the wards and in various mental health setting — together with my parallel life experiences; overcoming child sexual abuse, bullying, domestic violence, my mental illness, wellness and recovery.

You’ll learn about hope and recovery when you follow my journey through a psychotic depression which occurred prior to and was the reason for my training to become a mental health nurse.

“Mental illness doesn’t have to take over your life, it doesn’t have to define you as a person, it’s just important that you ask for help. It’s not a sign of weakness.”

 — Demi Lovato

You’ll find many resources; tips on how to deal with some of the most common mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety and panic attacks. There are posts on how to develop your verbal communication and active listening skills, together with tips on how to control your anxiety or panic attacks, and some useful mental health contacts.

You can read about

Mental illness can happen to anyone
  • the mental illness myths and facts
  • many of the fantastic mental health patients I’ve nursed over the years (all personal details such as names and ward names, have been changed and fictitious names have been used) 
  • the amusing stories too, not laughing at patients but the side-splitting laughter I’ve shared with patients and colleagues. I’ve laughed and cried with many a patient
  • some of the amazing colleagues I’ve worked with and some of the worst (location, wards and all names changed to protect privacy, and any likeness is purely coincidental)
  • the tales of despondency in both staff and patients and much about the poor working practices I’ve had the misfortune to witness
  •  my story here and here

You’ll find out what actually happens on busy, over-stretched wards in London, reading excerpts from my fifteen annual diaries; yes, I’ve kept them and I can’t part with them. They hold so many precious memories. But they also include some of my toughest days within the mental health environment.

Hard to read at times but a must for all nursing staff — including general nurses, midwives and students. Moreover, psychiatrist and junior doctors could learn a thing or two from a mental health nurse and ward manager.

I hope that anyone who’s experienced, or thinks they might be experiencing mental illness will take something positive from my blog.

“If we start being honest about our pain, our anger, and our shortcomings instead of pretending they don’t exist, then maybe we’ll leave the world a better place than we found it.”

– Russell Wilson

To use this blog effectively, you can click on Categories (chronological order) or type the topic name you want to find i.e. Psychosis into search and any posts that have the word Psychosis in them will appear.


I no longer work as a nurse and do not claim to treat mental illness. I am simply providing information to help people navigate their illness and available services. The information contained in my posts is for information only. If you require help with mental health concerns I can signpost you towards professional support.

In the meantime, if you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health problem or crisis, please contact your GP. or please call 999 (UK) for an immediate response.


Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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