Today I flipped the switch on My Mental Health Secret. Here’s my introductory post.
I want to get this right.
When I created My Diabetes Secret, I knew there was tremendous potential for a platform for people impacted by diabetes to safely, and anonymously, share what they were feeling. It feels like we, the diabetes community, have only recently matured to the point that openly discussing the mental burden of diabetes is something that we’re moderately comfortable with.
When I began planning the expansion of the My Disease Secret platform to other communities, I put the mental health community at the top of my list because I know that we need to have larger conversations about anxiety, depression, compulsions, obsessions, and other mental health issues. There needs to be a better way to talk about our experiences. There needs to be a better way to shine the spotlight on what is really happening. My hope is that the promise of anonymity will provide a safe space for all of us to talk about these issues.
So I reached out to a couple of advocates in the mental health space. Mark, from Everybody has a Brain, and Mike from It Starts With Me (oddly enough, both from Canada) to help ensure I get this right.
With their help, I hope to build a platform for an open, honest discussion about issues like anxiety, depression, fear, compulsions, obsessions, challenges, recovery, and relapse.
In developing the specifics of this platform, I decided that posts dealing with or mentioning suicidal thoughts will be published because, in part, it’s representative of what the community is feeling. Creating a platform that hosts everything related to mental health but suicide would not be genuine. It wouldn’t be fair. But, while I hope this platform empowers you to express whatever you are feeling, this is not a platform for reassurance, treatment, or support, and if you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts and inclinations, contact a trained professional.
That said, this blog will be hosting submissions covering the following topics: mental health, recovery, therapy, treatment, challenges, anxiety, depression, fear, medication, relapse, compulsions, obsessions, happiness, relationships, work, and school. While one or many of these may be triggering for you, and often harm-reduction approach is the best path to getting to tomorrow, learning how to feel things we don’t like is a crucial component of recovery.
I am not a mental health professional. I’m not qualified to assist medical, mental, or emotional emergencies. I’m only here to help. Part of the way this site can help is by pointing you in the right direction of more qualified assistance with a better chance of making a difference.
If you need to speak with someone, and you live in the United States, here are a few links for you to consider:
International Suicide Prevention Wiki
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline | 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Kristin Brooks Hope Center | 1-800-422-HOPE (4673)
If you need to speak with someone, and you live outside of the United States,this page details suicide hotlines for over 60 countries.
You can also find this same message on our broader resources page, and directly above the submission form.
This site is a platform for sharing. It’s built with the promise of anonymity, free from stigma, shame, and guilt. My hope is that you will be able to find catharsis through honesty, and solidarity in knowing you are not alone in whatever you are dealing with.
If you would like to share your secret, please use this submission form.
I truly want to get this right. I hope this works.
Christopher Snider, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2002