Aren't those adverts about 'talking about mental health' painful? I like their intention but the execution is a little 90's for my pallet.
Over the last year I've used this blog to document my process of making work / shows / bits as opposed to the facebook / twitter diatribe of promoting it but more importantly this blog has been an interesting diary of my mental health and its relation to success, failure and my 'career'.
Back in June I posted a blog about rejection (http://scottee-scottee.blogspot.com/2012/06/font-face-font-family-arial-font-face.html?spref=tw), this was at the start of a wave of depression that was to last two months.
I've lived with depression since I was diagnosed at the age of 15. After being expelled from school, beaten up because because of my sexuality (sorry this is sounding like an episode of Queer As Folk), coming from a family of addictions and becoming what educated people call 'socially excluded' I was ordered to sit in a room with two strangers for 8 weeks by Camden Social Services.
Since then I've had a rocky relationship with my mental health - I refused medication when Prozac was the 'in' as I was determined to self medicate, I'd already seen what medication did to my Mothers erratic behaviour.
I come from a long line of mental instability - my Grandfather had electric shock therapy in the 60's and medicated with alcohol until 2000, my dear old Mum continues to live with manic depression and is medicated and my Dad has recently been diagnosed cognitive therapies.... 'the origins of my mental health - nature or nurture' is another blog / book.
Once I discovered gay nightlife I began to medicate with booze and then onto cheap ecstasy and later coke and k until about 2009. Many people I tell about my drug addictions, who knew me at that time are shocked to discover I was an addict. I think the label 'club kid' helped mask the fact I was off it. This kid being 'avant-garde' had actually just taken a line of coke, a bump of k and a sniff of poppers to make him 'edgy'.
Since I became Scottee (I'm turning into Cher; referring to myself in the third person) I've had a few slips but my routine of an early start, plenty of water, full schedule and stability at home have kept me on the straight and narrow but it has, more importantly stabilised my mental health, up until June that is.
Since coming out of my latest bout of depression I've added swimming into the equation which really helps (now I sound like Mr Motivator - all these personalities in one blog - bi polar?) but the one thing I had never done which has improved my state of mind greatly - telling people.
Since June I've told everyone and anyone who'll listen, the surprising thing is people are interested and care. Mental health problems can often feel isolating but on the contrary, over the past few months its brought friends closer and created a support network for the next time I need help.
I guess those adverts are true - we do panic that everyone if going to think we are mentalists and maybe others don't know how to approach us to see if we ok.
Whatever the future of my mental health holds - My name is Scottee and sometimes I need abit of help.
As part of PACE's 'Big Gay 10k' event on 30th September I will be compereing the main stage. PACE are a chairty that offers support to the LGBT community around mental health and emotional well-being. If you would like more information on their services - http://www.pacehealth.org.uk and for more info on the Big Gay 10k event - http://biggay10k.co.uk