My Mind and Me: Your stories of coping with mental illness

image copyrightSam Whittall

All week on Radio 1 Newsbeat, we've been hearing from people who have mental health conditions.

For our documentary My Mind and Me six listeners opened up to us about their struggles with depression, anorexia, schizophrenia and more.

The documentary followed some of them over months, to see the real impact these problems have on their lives.

And their stories have inspired you too. Here, you explain what helps you cope.

image copyrightFaye Behesti


I suffer with depression, anxiety and panic attacks.

Depression isn't just feeling sad. It's an overwhelming feeling of sadness which can last for long periods of time, and not being able to just 'snap out of it'.

I get anxious over the smallest things. I used to enjoy going to gigs, but ever since my anxiety started I have stopped going. I think 'are people looking at me?'

The ways I try to manage are to take lots of deep breaths.

Another good thing for anxiety, if it's stopping you sleeping, is to write down all the thoughts that are bothering you.

The advice I would give to someone going through mental health is to please speak to someone. I regret keeping my depression to myself for six months.

image copyrightSam Whittall


I suffer every day with anxiety. It spiked about three years ago due to family bereavement.

I tried to do the typical bloke thing to start off with, and deal with the problem on my own.

But I soon realised it wasn't working, and with family support decided to get NHS help in the form of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

They taught me that anxiety's on a spectrum, it's never going to go away.

With help, I've managed to recognise and manage my triggers, and it's made a huge difference. Going to seek help is not a weakness.

image copyrightSinead Adams
image captionSinead's weight dropped below six stone


For around five years I suffered with anorexia nervosa. At the time, I didn't really understand what it was, or even that I was suffering at all.

I'd become aware of my body image, so I decided to restrict my calories to around 700 a day, which, looking back on it, was absolutely ridiculous.

image copyrightSinead Adams
image captionSinead is a healthy weight now and regularly takes part in physical challenges like The Wolf Run

My parents took me to my GP, and I was referred to the mental health service, where I was put on a strict diet plan.

It felt like everyone was working against me to try and undo all the 'good work' I thought I'd achieved.

It wasn't until my best friend said she was worried she was going to lose me that I realised I needed to change.

image copyrightSinead Adams
image captionSinead's got a tattoo of the National Eating Disorders Awareness logo to remind her of how far she's come

Over the course of around two years I started eating more, and really learned more about myself and who I wanted to become.

Through the love of my family and friends I'm glad to say I've been fully recovered now for five years.

If you're struggling with your mental health or any of the difficulties mentioned in this article you can find help at BBC Advice.

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