The taboo of tablets | Hannah’s Mental Health Story | Mind

Hi. I’m Hannah Shucksmith, and this
is my mental health selfie for Mind. I have struggled with depression for quite some time,
and most of it I’ve got through on my own. I am good at doing the right thing when I
don’t feel right. I’m good at taking the exercise I need. I’m good at responding
to my body. I’m good at eating well. I’m fortunate that I’ve got great friends and
I’m good at getting around them. But that wasn’t enough and I got to the
point where I needed more help, and acknowledging that was really quite scary for me. So going
to therapy felt okay because it was still me taking control, me having the initiative.
It felt like I was doing everything in my power to make the situation better. But when therapy wasn’t enough and I was
still really struggling, I had to accept that I needed these: antidepressants. It felt like
a huge step to start taking them, and a big taboo to say I needed something, a little
tablet, to make me feel okay every day. Why am I sharing this as my mental health
selfie? Because I honestly believe it’s these that have changed my life for the better.
I’ve been on them since last May, so almost a year now, and okay, I have to swallow my
pride every morning with the pill, but I feel good about being alive, I feel excited about
waking up. I wake up and I look forward to the day. If
the sun’s shining, I want to get outside. And that’s not how it felt a year ago before
I took the medication. If the sun was shining, it was like a painful sting on the fact that
I was feeling so bad and yet the day was so beautiful. I wouldn’t be here without these. And I’m sharing this because I know a lot
of people feel like I did, that it’s a big step to go onto antidepressants, and I want
to really encourage you, that if you’ve tried other things and you’re not getting
better, please do be kind to yourself. You don’t have to be better on your own, you
can be better with help, and some of that help looks like tablets. I had a skiing accident. I’ve just had an
operation. I’m on crutches at the moment. I can only get around on crutches because
my knee is in agony. And no one is looking at me, thinking, gosh, she’s using crutches,
she’s really failed at life. In the same way, no one is really making that judgement
that I failed because I’m on antidepressants, but I was making it of myself. But actually
I succeeded because I got over my pride and I am doing the thing that helps me. Now, if you’ve enjoyed this, please do do
your own mental health selfie for Mind and look up #mentalhealthselfie on YouTube to
follow others.

9 thoughts on “The taboo of tablets | Hannah’s Mental Health Story | Mind

  1. I was just think of the line of "antidepressants are a crutch", I'm glad you brought it up. And you're completely right, even if you are thinking of them as a crutch, so what? You would say a person with a broken leg shouldn't be using a crutch, why is medication any different to that?
    Medication gets such a bad rap from people, especially on the internet, as always it's the angriest who are the loudest.

  2. Hannah, really well done for being courageous in putting yourself in a (potentially) vulnerable position by sharing your story and bringing a little bit of hope to others

  3. I need to speak to Mind but am worried they are just another organisation run by government that don't listen, don't help and are purely there to shut you down and off. I have had damning time with the NHS. My 'treatment' and lack of any care has been biblically appaling. I need to my story told and understood. Can anyone advise? I am too mentally drained to be dealing with vile people who don't help in this industry. I has worn me down. Hand in the face at every turn. Healthcare professionals who know my issues but none of them helpingm the only help themselves and protect their departments with false lies, false reports and promises of help they never gave.

    What do I do? I want to speak to an organisation that can hear and document my story of dangerous and hansdoff treatment by the NHS who are avoiding helping people like me.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing your story Hannah. You bring hope to others who may have/ or struggling too. I hope that you are still riding this wave and doing well and trying each day, you are an inspiration! here is my blog feel free to add/msg me it is always good to connect with others who feel passionate about mental health matters, its what its all about i feel.

  5. If they're a crutch then it's like being on crutches for some leg condition that's never going to go away for me.

  6. Thank you for this video, I have tears flooding.. I was first prescribed anti depressants 9 years ago and never took them. I have find other ways to cover up the issue over the years and now I am 27 and something has to change. I have a lovely life and always said to myself I would not need to take a pill to help myself get better but its got to the point, no amount of walking in nature can help any more and its effecting every aspect of my life.. Thank you for making me feel its ok to ask for help.

  7. Hi Hannah, I have struggled with anxiety-related depression for many years; and was mainly in self-denial about it before accepting it as a diagnosis from my doctor. I have read many self-improvement/positive thinking books, undertaken CBT sessions and exercised to the level of becoming a marathon runner – all in an effort to feel better in my head! Whilst I continue to do all the previous I started a course of anti-deprressants in May of this year and have never felt so good about things in a long time. I actually have started to get real pleasure and relaxation from life again! Taking medication is not a failure, it’s just another way of getting the help you need to move forward and enjoy life! Thanks for being so open about your situation Hannah. Sharing your thoughts just confirms to me that what I did was right!

  8. Thank you for sharing this Hannah. There is a stigma to taking psychiatric medication that doesn't exist with physical medication. Your honest description of this and the self-stigmitation behind this is an important issue surrounding the overall stigma around mental health.

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