James from Yard Act spoke to my heart
Mel blogs about how the rock band's lead singer turned her mental health experience into a spoken-word poetry video.
I’m a person who loves travelling, loves sleeping and loves helping others . So that’s why I got into volunteering, why I work for TWE which is a non-profit organisation, and why I got involved in this project.
“Trying to get through my mental health problems whilst coming into adulthood has been a rollercoaster.”
My mental health story started at 12. Since then I’ve been dealing with bulimia, emotionally unstable personality disorder, depression and anxiety. Trying to get through all that whilst going through school, becoming a teenager and coming into adulthood – has been a rollercoaster I wasn’t expecting to ride. It’s been a tough situation but I’m here.
At first, I didn’t know what was wrong and I didn’t believe what was going on. It was my parents who found me help through child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS). They provided me with support and informed me of what was going on inside my head.
Going off the radar
Throughout the years, I got to learn about what mental health was, what my mental health was and what it was doing to me. When I turned 16 or 18, I was moved to the adult section of mental health and ever since then, support has been on and off.
In the past year, it’s been very tough trying to get help. I went from from weekly therapy, which helped me so much, to nothing in the space of a month. That was heart-breaking. It felt like I didn’t mean anything to anyone anymore. You go off the radar. You don’t exist anymore.
“To hear James speaking my words and involving my cat Blue as well was gobsmacking.”
As I saw other people go through what I’ve been through, I wanted to make a change. I didn’t want to sit there and just moan about it. I wanted to act on it, and I hope that’s what I’m doing right now. I love spreading awareness and I hope it makes a change.
Working on this project with James from Yard Act was unreal. When I was invited down to London to meet James to film my story, I thought “what is going on?!”.
It happened so fast. I can’t believe where we are now. To hear James speaking my words and involving my cat Blue as well was gobsmacking. When I showed my mum and dad this, they couldn’t believe it.
I’ve also shown some of my friends, and they got that this is serious. Throughout the years, I have been talking about mental health but I don’t think people have really clicked that this is my reality and the reality for so many of us. So to be working on this project means a huge amount.
Life story turned into a video
When James wrote down those words and when I first read it, I felt wow. He managed to turn my whole story which I could talk about for hours and hours, into a 30-second video. That is talent! I can’t thank James enough for doing that for me. Not just because he’s part of Yard Act but because he has put real emotion into telling my story. It’s more than words on a piece of paper. It’s a story, it’s awareness, it’s a life. I really hope it helps people, and I really hope I can help people.
Information & Support
When you’re living with a mental health problem, or supporting someone who is, having access to the right information - about a condition, treatment options, or practical issues - is vital. Visit our information pages to find out more.
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Blogs and stories can show that people with mental health problems are cared about, understood and listened to. We can use it to challenge the status quo and change attitudes.