One in five young adults are diagnosed with a mental health disorder; I myself being one of those one in five.
Mental health disorders, specifically anxiety disorder and depression, have been something I’ve struggled with since I was young, often preventing me from socialising or doing everyday normal things you would expect from kids. Eventually, I said to myself, “You know what, you don’t deserve to feel like this, you need to help yourself”, and so that’s what I did to some extent. I was diagnosed at the age of 16 with depression and anxiety disorder but failed to find the resources to help me find coping methods for these disorders. In fact, three in four children with a diagnosable mental health condition do not get access to the support that they need.
This is where YoungMinds comes in. YoungMinds is a charity that aims to bring awareness to the public and National Health Services about Mental Health conditions, stating, “We’re leading the fight for a future where all young minds are supported and empowered, whatever the challenges.” The charity offers resources and support groups to both young people who suffer from mental health conditions, as well as educating parents on how to help their children and how to spot the symptoms of those suffering. Fortunately for me, I have a family who are supportive of my disorder, although I found they struggled at first to come to terms with it. I mean, no parent likes the idea that their child is suffering in any way, especially when you physically cannot see the problem.
As part of coping with my own mental health conditions, I find comfort in supporting those who also suffer, and so I have chosen to support Young Minds by taking part in their ‘10k your way’ challenge, where you travel a 10k distance at your own pace and in any mode that suits you best. I took interest in this event as I feel it fully recognised the approach on how to deal with mental health conditions. It is a challenge, a journey, as such. Travelling a distance takes time and commitment but you must do it to what suits you best, something that I also discovered when finding your own coping method.
As part of my challenge, I will be travelling the distance between Swansea city centre and Bracelet Bay in Mumbles. Since coming to university, Swansea has become my second home, and I take comfort in walking along the coastline when I’m stressed. Therefore, doing my challenge along this route allows me to be somewhere I am comfortable and also allows me to take in the beauty of the city. It makes me realise how far I have come, and how much I have achieved since being at university, all because I got help and pushed myself to be who I really am.
For more information visit: youngminds.org.uk
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by Maddy Price