My Black Dog is

My Black Dog is

Looking inwards is not an easy task. You may uncover things you don’t like, aren’t proud of, wish were different. Like hearing your voice when speaking into a microphone or seeing a video, do I really sound like that, why is the pitch & tone different to what I hear when I speak daily?

It took me a long time to realise things weren’t all hunky dory internally. My ability to suppress, compartmentalise & hide were a skill honed over years of needing to. But needing to without understanding that it wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t necessary to lock these thoughts, emotions & feelings away until I was my most vulnerable, to wait until my early 20s when I was gaining independence in life, to then burden myself with navigating the world alone while building a life around avoiding life itself

My personal Black Dog is a potent cocktail

Social Anxiety
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Individually then can be a handful, combined, all consuming

For those that have been unfortunate to spend days or even weeks (sorry work colleagues) with me, you know I can talk endlessly. But when I walk into the room, I’m often petrified someone I don’t know will talk to me, I’ll rarely introduce myself and I’ve cancelled private work & social appointments due to social expectations manufactured in my head – to the point I’ve felt ill. When you wish I’d shut up, its often when I’m most comfortable. I’ve learnt to cope better & my predisposition to fear the worst has eased somewhat

However, there are other options for any of us wanting to explore ourselves or for one of a better term, seeking help

I’ve got to this stage of being 31 (yes, I know a lot of you think I’m in my 40s+ until I drop that bombshell) with years of professional help, learning about myself and at times, self talk that things will be ok

MY BLACK DOG offers free daily text based/web chats for any adult who wants to talk to someone who gets it, a peer, someone like you. All the trained volunteers have their own personal lived mental health experiences. They get you. They are you

*please note they are not a crisis line*