by Devan Witter
The aim of Time to Talk Day is to get as many people talking about mental health as possible. At the moment, people with mental health problems are made to almost feel isolated because of their condition. They are made to feel worthless about themselves just because of how other people react.
Time to Talk Day is an opportunity for you to just have a conversation and talk about mental health. This doesn’t need to be difficult and can be as simple as making a cuppa or going for a walk.
I wanted to talk about how bullying can affect your mental health, especially the mental health of young people who are being bullied.
Bullying has so many affects that it is unbelievable; it affects everyone in a different way. Being bullied though can also affect your mental health, it causes both long and short term problems.
Short term, being bullied can cause a young person to suffer from depression, it can also cause young people to want to self-harm or commit suicide. The victim may even feel that they are unwanted or unloved. This can lead to the development of low self-esteem, low self-confidence or social anxiety.
Long term, bullying is known to cause chronic depression, PTSD and OCD amongst other mental health conditions. Bullying can also impact on an existing mental health condition and cause the victim’s state of mental health to worsen. As a young person it is hard enough growing up with a mental health condition, so this being made worse because of bullying can make growing up very difficult.
I would like to encourage everyone today to talk to someone about their mental health, just ask them how they are feeling and if you are asked about your own mental health, you do not need to be ashamed to talk about it.
Devan Witter, 19, was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) in the New Year’s Honours List for his services to children’s mental health and wellbeing.