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Ever feel like you’re the only one going through this? We’ve asked people affected by complex mental health issues to share their stories. You’re not alone.

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Kat

Kat: defeating the ‘tortured artist’ stereotype

Nothing in the world could convince me to suffer for my art.
Finn

Finn: being my genuine self

Through the trans community, I found a GP & psychologist who were accepting & compassionate.
Kaitlin

Kaitlin: finding my voice

I've learnt to be open with those who surround me with constant love, hope & acceptance.
Tim

Tim: owning my identities

Whatever label you choose to use, whatever situation you’re in, you are valued.

Tilly

Tilly: my mental health toolbox

I am able to live, enjoy and adventure in spite of having a complex mental illness.

Jess

I am a psychology student, so I was well aware of mental illness and bipolar before I was diagnosed.

Declan

I thought what I was going through went on in everyone’s life; that everyone felt this kind of day-to-day sadness.

Mahlie

'I’ve always had a strong sense of identity and am quite strong willed.'

Ali

I didn’t want to feel like I was different. It took a long time to come around to the idea that what I was feeling wasn’t normal.

Julie

Julie

'People with OCD know that what we’re doing is irrational — that’s why we hide it.'

Tim

'The intrusive thoughts that define OCD are constant. They don’t take a break when you’re at work, or on holidays.'

Hannah

'It’s a scary illness, but it doesn’t mean the people who have it are scary. We’re human, just like everyone else.'
Mark

Mark

'I’m a living example that with help and support you can come out the other side.'
Nicole

Nicole

‘I see my experience with depression and anxiety as a lesson learned. I want to use it to help others that are struggling.’

Steph

Stephanie

'People say cancer takes over your body to kill you. I believe mental illness takes over your mind to kill you.'
Denielle

Denielle

'I don’t think people understand how debilitating a mental illness can be – it takes over your whole life.'
Dov

Dov

'Mental illness symptoms are not always visible like a broken arm or physical ailment. You can’t see someone’s internal struggles.'
Jo

Jo

'A lot of people think carers are saints, not humans. But they are real people who do suffer from isolation, stress and burnout.'
Matt

Matt

'I look forward to a day when people with mental illness will be accepted for who they are and won’t be judged.'

Sandy

Sandy

‘Schizophrenia is a horrible housemate. You have to learn to understand its moods and the way they affect you . . .'
Jock

Jock

‘I would like to speak in public more often. I want to help people, because if I can change my life around, anybody can.’
Kylie

Kylie

‘Young carers often slip under the radar. Responsibilities at home can affect them, yet this isn't recognised.’
Evan

Evan

‘Self-advocacy is about learning to stand up for yourself . . . It's building your confidence and self-esteem.’
Tania

Tania

'I love all animals, I particularly love dogs. Whenever I am with Kelsey and out walking, I focus on her rather than myself.'
Terese

Terese

'Like everyone, it's important for me to find a life/work balance, because I have bipolar I try not to overload myself.'
James

James

‘Once I got out of that place, there was no way I'd ever touch drugs again. I didn’t want to destroy my whole life.'

SANE Peer Ambassadors

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Facts & guides

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Our factsheets & guides provide easy-to-read information on complex mental health issues for everyone. Have a look - you can browse, download or send them on to someone who needs them.

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The SANE blog

Stories and day-to-day issues affecting people living with mental illness.

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Where to get help for you or someone you know.

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A selection of articles, personal stories and videos.

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SANE Forums

The SANE Forums are full of people like you, who want to talk to you and offer support. We care about what’s going on for you - because between us all, we’ve been through a lot.