~ Hannah O’Brien
The 25th-29th November marked a brilliant awareness campaign. The campaign looked at both mental and physical illnesses that often go unnoticed and that you cannot truly see without knowing more about the person. This included eating disorders, anxiety and depression, which is what Swansea Mental Wealth Society and Student Minds focused on.
One of the main aims of the campaign was to get people talking about mental health, and to challenge stigma attached to mental illnesses, because they are more common than people think. In fact 1 in 4 people will experience mental illness within the course of a year, with the most common being anxiety and depression. The main reason these illnesses tend to go unnoticed is because those suffering often do not feel able to talk about them: they may be embarrassed or shy, or it might be that they don’t want people to worry or don’t know how to bring up the conversation. That’s why invisible illness week brought the conversation to you, and offered anyone the chance to speak up about their illness. It was surprising, encouraging and inspiring how many people took the chance to talk. They were extremely positive about the campaign, our peer support group, and the power of talking.
Because talking changes lives.