Mental Illness and Recovery on Social Media

Social media can be an extremely positive things. The modern age has provided voices for the silent or silenced, it has provided comfort for those who once may not have understood themselves and, most importantly, it has provided access to hundreds of communities for people that would have otherwise been suffering alone.
For me, these communities provided comfort, knowing that people were out there suffering and living with the same problems that I do – they made me feel less lonely and finally gave me an opportunity to make friends that I otherwise may not have had (due to my social anxiety). From the disabled community, to the mental health community even stretching to communities of people with particular problems and diagnosis’; it is inclusive and everyone can have a place where they feel like they belong – living in a society that may not be made for people like them.

Being on a section has meant that I have been isolated from the community, especially people my age. Leaving school and entering the confines of a psychiatric unit, meant that I no longer had my friends around me. Even in hospital, I couldn’t fit in with my peers (the patients). There were times of the day when I was allowed to go into a private lounge for a couple of hours just to get away from the bullying and torment of those around me (sometimes including the staff members).
Leaving children’s and adolescent (CAMHS) mental health unit, I didn’t have the majority of the friends I once had, many of which were soon moving to university. However, I did have my social media.
Moving into a locked rehabilitation (mental health rehab), I was allowed a phone (unlike the CAMHS – child and adolescent – unit), which allowed me to keep in contact with some of the friends I left behind and also make new ones. I became obsessed with my Instagram, spending hours upon hours looking at all of the people making such creative things and talking so openly and honestly about their lives and experiences with an array of different issues. I was learning more about things, people and even myself. It gave me a new level of intuition and insight into my own mental and physical wellbeing. Whether it was about the symptoms of my cerebral palsy or my mental health.

However, as with everything, there are negative sides to everything. When it comes to both the mental illness recovery community and the disabled community, these negatives can lead to problems with people’s wellbeing and can do more harm than good.

Sometimes in the mental health community, rather than promoting recovery, some opt to share extremely triggering content that can look like it is promoting the exact opposite – negative coping strategies and even relapse. While it may seem harmless, and a way for someone to express themselves, the more people doing this, the more it can seem that getting better is not the option to take. That accepting negative coping strategies is better than fighting them. Needless to say, that is an extremely dangerous way of viewing self harm.
Others choose to dedicate entire accounts to images of themselves and others (often strangers) promoting extremely ill-looking bodies. In the eating disorder community, this is known as ‘thinspiration’ and can be detrimental to a person’s health. People will use these images as incentive to either continue starving themselves or begin to, to achieve the thin bodies that they see in these images.
Something else that a lot less people talk about in the eating disorder community is ‘body checking’, which is when a person deliberately poses themselves in photos regularly, to check and show how much weight they have lost. Of course, not every slim person with an account full of selfies is doing this, but when it is paired with certain behaviours, a particular mentality and often being self-deprecating, it might be a sign of an eating disorder, or at least negative self image.
Personally, I find that seeing a person relapse far from inspirational. The romanticisation and glamourisation of mental illness and being in a mental health hospital has become more of a problem across bigger social media sites over the years, especially TikTok and Instagram. Honestly, you do not want to be stripped of your right to freedom and you do not want people staring at you in the shower. You are stripped from your dignity, you have a distorted view of what living in the community is like, you become dependent on those around you and you don’t have independence. I have lost my relationship with my family, many friends, while other relationships have become strained or distant. I can safely say that I value my time in nature and outside more so than the ones that I see on a screen.
No amount of attention you get on social media will equate to a fulfilling life outside. You cannot live your life from within the walls from a hospital.
Over the last couple of years on social media, it went from something I started engaging in more often to talk to people to make me less lonely, to something that I was obsessed with back to something that I use for friends and a community feel. I do pace myself a lot more than I used to, though.

MADE @ № 18, Alfreton – Indie Coffee Shop Reviews

Friday 13th August 2021

As soon as you enter shop, you are transported from the traffic and chaos of Chesterfield Road. From the loud traffic to a welcoming and gentle coffee shop. When it comes to comforting colour schemes, MADE @ № 18, Alfreton, certainly knows best. With calming greys, neutral browns and oranges, there is an autumnal nostalgia when you step foot into this coffee shop.
    Upon entering, you are welcomed by friendly staff, who immediately make you feel right at home. It’s hard to keep your eyes averted from the delicious-looking cakes. They don’t just look delicious, they are delicious!
      Being led into the garden, you are greeted with a marquee, adorned with wooden stars – both beautiful and homely simultaneously. In the night, I presume the garden would look even more cosy, as I spotted the simple fairy lights across all four sides of the marquee. The wooden tables gave it a lovely rustic look, while the metal chairs and potato sack cushions made sure you were comfortable, while continuing the simple, yet attractive, aesthetic.
   Our order was promptly delivered with an exceptionally short waiting time, as we were served our cakes and our drinks. The slices of cake were generous, to say the least! They were delectably sweet, but not overpoweringly so.
  Finally, the main event, of course, the coffee – served at a perfect temperature with a Biscoff biscotti. The coffee was not too strong, but not too weak, somewhere in the middle, while it left a rather fruity aftertaste. Fruity coffees are not usually my thing, preferring more nutty or cocoa flavours. However, this was refreshing, therefore making it well-paired and contrasted with the sweetness of my coffee and walnut cake.
   Due to the size of the slice of cake, I couldn’t quite finish it, and the coffee was quite small, so I got another one, so that I could still as much of the delicious cake as possible.

Overall, I would rate this coffee shop an 8.5/10 stars and would love to go again to peruse more of their breakfast options.

The Place that Would Change My Life (Part 1)

To preface this, I just wanted to say that this is the true story of the first ever psychiatric unit I was on. I changed the name of the unit, hospital, any patients and other names I felt needed to be protected or remain confidential.

This is part one. I don’t know how in depth I will go in telling my story or how many parts this is going to be, as of yet. However I think it is important to tell my story and teach people how the hospital trap or system cycle comes about. When I first went to the unit I talk about in this, I thought I would be there for a couple of weeks. I have now been almost constantly in hospital for five years.

Anyway, I hope you can find this, in some way, enjoyable.

It was the middle of summer. The air was muggy and thick, it was suffocating. Somehow my body remained cold – my palms were covered in sweat. I was shivering… or was I shaking? The car journey had been relaxing, listening to my favourite songs and laughing with my best friend, but everything I regarded to be normal was about to change.
   We walked towards the entrance. The door stood tall, looming over me as I made my way up the steps, clutching my new Dory stuffed toy. It made me feel extremely childish, though these were the sorts of moments where you had to grab onto any remains of childlike innocence, for all of this would soon disappear.
    Dim lighting and greying white walls in the hallway washed out the blue skies and yellow sun of the outdoor world as soon as the front door closed. A large, rounded desk sat at the side of the hallway, beneath a grand staircase and large light fitting, that wasn’t quite a chandelier. This was all much more luxurious than I had anticipated. The walls were panelled and crisp, as were the doors throughout the reception area and adjoining corridor. Every door was large, I don’t know if this was meant to make everywhere seem more inviting, but it made me more anxious.
   I looked up the corridor hoping to see more people than just the one behind the front desk, but nothing. No one. Empty and lonely.
  “Can I help you?” cooed the woman behind the desk, in a too-friendly voice.
“Hello, yes. We’re going to be admitted to Mangrove ward?” my mother answered, but by ‘we’, she meant me. What interest would my mother have for a place such as this? She has been avoiding the inevitable of me ending up in a place like this for years now. Since the age of eleven, she knew something was wrong. It had escalated a lot since then, but we had a shared awareness that I should have got help sooner. I guess one of the only things my mother and I have in common is our impressive power of avoidance.
   “Ah, yes, take a seat over there – a nurse from the ward will be here to take you up shortly,” my mother, my best friend and I headed up to the seating area. I clutched my bags tightly, as if they were going to get up and walk away from me.
   We sat, waiting, and my best friend looked at me nervously. Part of me wondered if my mother had told her. Told her the things I had been saying that got me in this mess – exposed me for the truly crazy and downright despicable person that I was. I looked all around, hoping that I would see someone who could tell me what it was going to be like. I had no idea what to expect. For now, I had my freedom. I could just get up right now and just leave. I could go back home and pretend that nothing happened – everything would be fine, I just needed to go back home. Put everything back to normal.
   Then a woman came through a doorway and said, “Hello, are you Kian? I’m a nurse from Mangrove and I’m here to take you up onto the ward,” I nodded and the three of us got up and followed the nurse.
    That’s when everything got scary. The first footsteps onto this ward would change the course of my life forever, little did I know that yet…

Fantasy and Reality

Frequently in my life, I have been concerned with what is real and what is in my head. If you make your headspace more comfortable, is it truly an issue whether you live in reality or not? The world can be ever so unpredictable, and it can often be better to go somewhere within our control. Somewhere where there is no judgement or shame, no violence or fear – just the familiarity of everything in the world that you love and hold dear to you.

Without our reality, there could never be fantasy. Fantasy is simply an embellished version of the life that we already know. Without reality there would be no escapism; where would we be escaping to and what would we be running from? If fantasy were reality, it would be equally as mundane and then we would long for another alternative to the world we are presented with.

Some people choose to escape to a world they perceive to be better than their own, but no life, not even a desired reality, can be faultless. In fact, a world that is faultless can be the very fault within it. How do we overcome things? How do we learn? How do we become a full and interesting person? The mistakes, the wrongs and the lessons are all part of the human condition, and if we were to deny that we need those to live we deny our own futures and future generations of an interesting life.
  If nobody ever suggested improvements to our lives, we would still live inside cold caves. Maybe not even caves, because nobody would have thought of the concept of shelter.

Not being a simulation of this word ‘perfect’ is a good thing! It is a word that so, so many people hold close to their hearts and set as a goal to strive towards; whether it is ‘perfect results’, ‘perfect skin’ or the ‘perfect marriage’, it’s something people want. Could you ever honestly say that you would be happy with a life that is perfect and faultless?
   Triumphs over adversity and those who didn’t believe in you is a thing of both amazement and beauty in equal measure. A life without pain is a comfortable one, but where does that take you? Pushing your boundaries just that extra inch (not mile) is a powerful thing! Overcoming obstacles, especially those another person has put in your way, is rewarding.
   You will never know this feeling if you continue sticking to the familiar path. The best adventures are those where you take the scenic route – stray from that road, start something new! Adventures never occur in the same place as a person’s comfort zone.

Fighting Fire With Fire – Social Media and Social Justice

Social media is a minefield. One wrong word, one wrong turn or speaking to the wrong person can suddenly get you into dangerous waters. It is something that has simultaneously connected us to a wider range of support and friends, while providing us with more hatred, negativity and bullies. When you have a problem, the void you were once screaming into, could now be heard by potentially heard by thousands, if not millions, of people. What was one person’s problem, was now a whole online support group or thread screaming about how Piers Morgan, once again, has invalidated them as a person. Where everyone now has a whole army of supporters to flee to their rescue whenever they express a controversial view. What was a hundred letters of hate mail, is now thousands of comments threatening to kill you and your family.
While I am in no way in agreement with the opinions and behaviours of Piers Morgan and his gaggle of Twitter supporters, this does not mean I can say that anything that is done against this man is right and that he deserved it. Death wishes are all too common in the online world, but this went to Metropolitan Police. This was not a one off comment, this was ‘I will kill you and your family’ written incessantly to one man, because of things he has said over his career.

As shocking as it may sound to some of my followers, particularly from Instagram, I am a big believer in free speech. This is not to say that I agree with using this as an excuse to be harmful, abusive or derogatory to any person or group; I simply mean that if someone expresses a certain view on something, we should listen to their perspective whether we agree with it or not and can then choose to express our side of the debate without being harmful in any way, also.
It will come as no shock to anyone, that this is not the way that the majority of people handle it. Fighting fire with fire never ends well, though, and insulting people because you were offended creates a vicious cycle and can often lead to larger groups attacking one another, because of a disagreement with one or two people. It seems like, in today’s society, that everyone wants to be a politician, regardless of their knowledge or even effort to educate themselves. If you have access to Twitter, the likelihood is that Google can also provide page after page of information, if you so desire. No matter who someone is, they have the power to completely destroy a person’s reputation, and, in some cases, entire career.

In spite of the side of the political spectrum you personally identify more with, it is clear that neither side is perfect. Social justice has had a profound impact on the right wing, making them more defensive of their own beliefs, displaying more animosity and increasing shallow mindedness to people’s differences, rather than the intended effect of becoming more tolerant and accepting.
Social justice warriors are named just that, as most have adopted a ‘shout to be heard’ attitude. This will, undoubtedly, threaten some of the people who they’re trying to talk to, making them more likely to fight back. However, you may argue that SJWs were shouting at the oppressors, because they were being shouted at first.
This being said, some people are stuck in their ‘old ways’ and past views, while this does not excuse any mistreatment of those they’re discriminating against, a change of behaviour can often be threatening for people and can make them want to fight back, regardless of what their opinion ever was. Some may not be as open minded to accepting and embracing new ideas, while others may approach these subjects with open arms.

Education is key, however, forcing people to listen to your beliefs is not. I have been on the side where I felt that yelling at people was the only way of getting my message across, whereby passive aggressive messages and mumblings were put into the open space as apposed to healthy discussion.

Either way, we now have more than ever at our disposal to educate ourselves and each other, to communicate with wider audiences and gain an international reach where we never could before. Use it wisely. Talk to people and remain humble rather than hostile. Also remember to take regular breaks from your online social life, take a look at the view and remember the feelings of being connected with your surroundings, the open space that cannot judge you at all. You don’t always need other people on a screen to feel connected to the world around you, the world on your doorstep is enough.

When I Got Older, It Just Went Away…

One day, when I was ten years old, I approached my dad. With one idea in my head, one sentence on my lips and one thought circling and circling around my mind. It was relentless and I simply didn’t know where it was coming from. I wondered whether there were other people in my life who felt the same, so I went to the person in my life who I trusted the most, the one who I knew would be honest with me no matter how ludicrous I sounded.
I sat beside him in the garden, feeling every syllable of this question stinging my lips with its painful, intrusive thoughts and finally said (as if it didn’t scare me at all and it was the most ‘normal’ question in the world),
“Daddy, do you ever just feel like nothing is real?”
As the curious and inquisitive child I was, I waited for an answer, studying my fathers every small expression, every raised and furrowed brow, every pursed lip and eye roll. He sighed, “Yes, when I was about your age I did, but when I got older it just went away…”
Now there were even more questions! How long is ‘when I got older’? How much older will I be?! I didn’t want to bother with incessant questions, so I just sat and looked out to our yellow slide and back drop of fields, rock and the never-ending sky.

Today I am still asking, How much older will I be? How long will I have to wait until I feel connected to my surroundings, be fully immersed into my reality and finally feel ‘whole’ again? The sad thing is that this question may not ever be answered. I have learnt, over time, to stop pinning my hopes on a feeling, or the end to a particular feeling, because some things will just stick with you, as unfortunate as that sounds.

It is no secret that I was always an anxious child. Perplexed by both life’s complexities and its simplicities too. Often, still, I sit and look around to see a world I know I will never understand, and might always be left wondering, How is any of this even real? Anxiety, though, may not be caused by this feeling of uncertainty about reality, and instead be the thing causing it!

What I have been experiencing for all these years, and what confused me for so, so long, has a name: Derealisation defined as: where you feel the world around is unreal. People and things around you may seem “lifeless” or “foggy”. You can have depersonalisation or derealisation, or both together. It may last only a few moments or come and go over many years. It is very common in anxiety, stress, depression and panic attacks.
This became more of a constant in my life when I began to experience regular panic attacks at school. The world I was in, the room I was in, would fade out of existence and it would seem like I was looking through a smoke screen and observing my own life as a second party. Never feeling like my own life experiences were ‘real’ often made me extremely low. I would want to escape to fictional worlds I would write about and live in my imaginary forest in my head, because I would feel safer there, I would feel comforted, rather than having the harsh sensory overload and overstimulation that life presented to me.

When I first asked that question when I was ten, there were still aspects of myself and the world around me that I felt connected to. However, over the years and over numerous hospital admissions, I feel I have drifted further from what I considered to be my life and reality itself. Fortunately, there are things that I experience that fill me with so much joy and fulfilment that I never thought I would have the capacity to experience, due to feeling ‘distant’. You don’t have to know that something is real to feel joy from it, otherwise why would so many people engross themselves in fictional worlds and characters and stories?
A psychologist I used to have said a lot of interesting things to me. A lot of them, admittedly, I don’t agree with. Despite this, there is one thing that he said to me that has stayed with me, that I can neither agree nor disagree with (as it hasn’t happened yet), and it was this,
“Well, one day, you will feel back in touch with reality again, and it will be the most enlightening day of your life, but also the scariest,” my only response to this was,
“I think I’ll just stay as I am then!” but just as with a panic attack, anxiety, derealisation and depersonalisation, you can’t choose when this will happen, you can only use coping strategies to make yourself feel better when it does happen.

So, really, almost ten years apart from each other, I was told a similar thing about my derealisation and depersonalisation. Maybe it’s true, when I get older, it’ll just fade away…

Pick Up a Pen

You grab the walls and put my head in your hands, 
Screaming and screaming until all air leaves your lungs, 
Scratch your hands and hold your wrists tight, 
There’s simply no way that any of this is real. 

You go into the garden and breathe in deep, 
You can feel the cold on your nose. 
Your hands turn to ice and start to become numb, 
The lines between reality and fiction are blurred. 
Flicking through pages and realising that  
Books are better than your mind, you think. 

Sitting and watching film after film, 
Devouring story after story, because 
No matter the fiction you absorb:
It is just that… Fiction. 

When you walk out of the cinema, 
The screen and blackness have gone, 
Now, only the light of day remains. 
Real life, sinking it’s claws into your precious brain. 
Run, run, the voice in your head shrieks, 
People around just watch with ache in their hearts, 
The realisation that you have gone, 
They can’t seem to get who they knew and loved back, 
Grasping at a vacuum, with repeated nothing… 
Empty space waiting to be filled. 

Corners are safe, you think, so you sit and wait, 
You wait until you feel at peace again, 
Waiting until you can fully be happy with the 
Real world. Nobody will ever be fully contempt, 
But some days will be better. 
Tears rolling down your cheeks, you feel like 
You’re in prison, with no release date. 

Trapped in your mind, you can’t hear a thing, 
Surrounded by friends and family,  
Yet you can’t see their faces. They know where you are, 
They will hold this memory until you can find your way back, 
Protect you if anything even attempts to cause harm… 

One day you look around and see their faces, 
It’s unbelievable and you ask, ‘What day is it?’ 
Somebody calls back, ‘Why it’s today, of course,’ 
You nod, knowing there is more. 

You start off quite shaky, understandably so, 
At least, though, you are glad to be home, 
Because there is nothing like the life you have, 
There are cracks in pavements and holes in roads, 
But without these, who would you be? 

You feel a pang in your heart as the darkness 
That consumes you threatens to come back and 
You feel all of reality come back, then 
Pick up a book and start to sit down, 
However, this time it is empty, with pages to fill, 
You think that maybe you’ve got a story to tell. 
Sensibly, you don’t dive straight in, 
Then one day you look and pick up a pen. 

Word after word comes pouring out 
And inky pages begin to fill up, 
Like the books you read, the stories begin to form, 
They piece together like a jigsaw puzzle. 
Friends and family stand with smiles on their faces, 
Proud to see the work you have created. 
They sit and read, page after page, 
They know that this isn’t fiction, they saw it with  
Their own eyes. Unlike book after book lining your shelves, 
This story is real, 
It’s one you’re proud to tell, 
You can hold it in your hand, it is yours and finally… 

You own it. 
 

Voices, Vices, Fighting and a Future

Settle, settle, quieten down,
My head is pounding,
All of you talking…
Give it a rest!
I don’t need your comments
When I am trying to get dressed!

You’re fat, you’re ugly and you have no worth
This isn’t needed in any sort of way.
Please stop being like that.
All I want is to have some tea
And you’re whispering in my ear
Telling me what I should be.

I am lonely, tired and you’re the only ones here,
But you’re just too loud,
You’re not what I need.
The voices screaming
Will not let me succeed.

Leave me alone!
I would rather have no sound.
My life will never get better
If I can’t turn it around!
You make me feel bad about my body
And my mind.
I need my time and opinions,
Otherwise I’ll go insane!
Is this what you care about or
Is it the control you enjoy?

There’s a door over there,
But a rope tied to my back.
Which way am I headed,
Which way am will I be on track?
There’s opportunities and a future
Shining as bright as the sun.
Please let me go
And start a new life.

Your words aren’t going to help me,
Maybe the doors will?
Understand, because you helped me get somewhere,
It’s just holding me back now,
You stay in your comfort zone and
I will move on.
Sorry for leaving you,
But staying would be wrong…

You Can’t Tell Me How to Feel

One of the things I have always found odd in my life is being offended on behalf of another, second-hand offense, if you will. I also wanted to start this post by saying that I am one of the biggest advocates for free speech.

When I was younger, I thought it was ‘normal’ when people would get upset over something they had heard or seen another person say or do. Having a disability often meant that people would make inquisitive comments. I look back on a lot of these moments and see them for the questions that they were, simply inquisitive.
They wanted to know why I walked the way I do, have the posture that I have, carry myself in the way I do. The problem was that many people, including family members, didn’t realise that I didn’t mind, as long as I knew that I was telling people the correct information too. Often being asked questions like, ‘Why do you walk like that?’ is frowned upon, but if you phrase it in a polite way, there’s no issue there, and everyone has the right to say that they don’t feel comfortable with telling you.
By far one of the best questions I overheard between my mum and sister when I was little was ‘When’s *birth name*’s poorly leg going to get better?’ I wouldn’t have minded telling my sister that I was born this way and it wasn’t going to improve, but my mum instantly said, ‘You can’t just ask these things!’.
An even better example of my sister making a gem of a comment about disability was when I was seven years old in Disneyland, making my sister five. She was riding in my wheelchair after her legs got tired from walking around the park all day and I was walking beside her when she suddenly exclaimed, ‘We’re so lucky *birth name* is disabled!’, I giggled, I couldn’t help myself, it was laughable! Straight away she was told off and she said, ‘but it’s true, we wouldn’t get through all the queues and meet all the characters or anything!’ and she had a very good point, in Disneyland the perks of my disability are so much more obvious! I look back on this memory and smile, she’s found a positive in my darkness, how can you scold someone for that?!
Not every person will be forthcoming to you with their issues, but others will be happy to tell you. The only thing is the way you phrase things.

Rather than asking, I have had this observation made on my first day on a particular ward in a psychiatric unit, ‘You walk pretty weird, don’t you, Kian?!’. This is definitely not the way to introduce yourself or start a conversation! However, one of the main issues I had with this particular was how people reacted, a friend instantly interjected with, ‘You can’t just say that!’. I was just ready to repeat my life story for the 200th time! I replied, ‘I have cerebral palsy,’ and the person instantly apologised, feeling embarrassed that he’d just told a disabled person that they walk weird! I looked to my friend who stuck up for me, and told them that they didn’t need to, and that they had no reason to be upset. I can stand for myself, even if it is a bit unsteady!

Unfortunately I am not only part of a single marginalised group, I am disabled, mentally ill, transgender with a boyfriend! Now, I know that I am, for sure, still in a privileged position for multiple reasons, but it means that people both online and in real life are still there to criticise you, make fun of you and get offended on your behalf. Mental health patients I have met make some of the edgiest jokes out of everyone! Disabled people make the best disability jokes! As long as I know my boundaries and my audience. This is the key with any statements that may cause offense or be personal towards others. Sometimes you don’t know what another person is going through, and that’s okay, you can’t always predict how another is going to react to anything you say, but as long as you don’t purposely say something again, there’s nothing wrong with just apologising and moving on.
Emotions are not things that you can hold for someone, nor are they something you can project onto another person. If someone were to make an edgy joke towards me or in general about something I am first-hand personally affected by, it should never be another person’s job to get upset about it for me, unless they also have those personal experiences, whether they be first or second-hand. Otherwise, if you have never been a part of it, how could you possibly be offended?

The dictionary defines offense as follows: ‘annoyance or resentment brought about by a perceived insult to or disregard for oneself.’. Yes, that is correct, for ‘oneself’, not each other. Nothing is inherently ‘offensive’ just because it’s edgy, there has to be context and it has to effect people on a personal level. I could say Monopoly is offensive because I have personally experienced bankruptcy, for example.

Now, some reading this might think of me as an absolute hypocrite, and you would probably be right, as there is one particular social media site that is a complete minefield when it comes to Social Justice Warriors, being offended on another’s behalf and spreading misinformation. Twitter is almost on par. For quite a few months I became completely enthralled by the world of social justice and feeling the need to tell people that particular things are things to be completely disgusted by, when they don’t even have anything to do with me. I have called out posts, jokes and things that people say, and I have no right to do so. In fact, I often went overboard and perceived certain things to be offensive when they were actually just light-hearted. In this modern day society, everyone seems to want to cancel each other and there’s no need!

Now, this is not to say that people shouldn’t call out things that other people have said, that isn’t the case at all. I would encourage any white person to be anti-racist. In the UK, we have a list of protected characteristics, including race, religion, gender, sexuality and disability. This means that these people should not be discriminated against. The problem with today’s society is that we often don’t know where the line is drawn between making mistakes, phrasing things in the wrong way and making jokes versus being openly discriminatory.

I know this was long and heavy, but I hope you can understand my views on these issues.

What Team Work Makes – A Poem

So, I initially wanted to write about the identities and about how many new ones have communicated to me and things, but due to a recent incident, I am not having good communication with the system. I can hear little whispers about me every now and then and hear them communicating to one another, but for now they can’t forgive me, so I have chosen not to focus my latest post on them. I’m hoping I will be able to write about them soon.

Here’s the poem I worked on today, and I hope you like it:

There’s something that’s changed,
I could feel it within,
First it was a burning,
Prickling on my skin,
Then I realised it was something deeper,
Hidden in my mind within…

It wasn’t even physical at all,
Every attempt of getting away,
Was like hitting a cold, brick wall.

People told me it would be different
this time, I simply disagreed…
There was no part of me that
believed that I could succeed.
I didn’t want to work with them,
and that was a fact,
But they said to get better I would
have to drop the act.

So I tried and tried,
With minimal success.
Some days it was a chore,
Simply to get dressed…

Now things are different,
I started working with the teams,
Now all my nightmares,
Have transformed into dreams.
I never thought that I would get this far,
Yet here I am, the only proof of my journey,
Is an array of scars.

Sometimes there’s still bumps
Getting in my way.
At least now I know,
I want to live to see another day…