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Mar 21

UK School Bomb Hoaxers: An Open Letter

By Rishin | Awareness: Challenging Ignorance & Fighting Stigma

Dear Hoaxers,

I’m not going to tear into you with jibes and angry accusations. That would be tempting, to be sure, but that isn’t what this is about. Doing that would make this about me but this is about you.

This is to give you a glimpse into the life of people to whom you have caused distress. One instance springs to mind: my son, an autistic young man who, like many others, is living in a society that persistently refuses to accept his differences.

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Feb 23

Halo, Suicide, and Stigma

By Rishin | Awareness: Challenging Ignorance & Fighting Stigma

Those of us who are involved in mental health advocacy are deeply aware of the power of language. A misbegotten word here; a thoughtless phrase there can have a powerful impact on someone who is experiencing mental ill health.

Such language builds upon the foundation of discrimination that we find ourselves surrounded by daily, forming additional obstacles that need to be overcome as it twists the attitudes of neurotypical people.

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A woman looking from atop hills. Her view represents the challenges of my BPD diagnosis
Jan 20

Borderline Personality Disorder: Diagnosis

By Rishin | Mental Health: What You Need to Know

It’s taken ten years to get answers. Ten long, painful years wondering why this had happened to me, but the most unbelievable thing has been my relief at having a BPD diagnosis.

Let’s face it, in the current climate, a diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder is a kick in the teeth. It’s a heavily stigmatised diagnosis and one that the media love to throw around as a Bogey Man of mental ill health.

However, it doesn’t end there: stigmatising language has become second nature to us – a common currency of casual catchphrases to some, but ones with deeply detrimental meaning to others.

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A young woman looking at rows of screens showing faces, they could be Twitter profile pictures
Dec 13

Mental Health & Social Media

By Rishin | Awareness: Challenging Ignorance & Fighting Stigma

Our lives are played out upon the stages of Twitter and Facebook. Likes and shares are our applause and comments the reviews of our peers.

The frequent hits of dopamine feed our growing obsession and the chance to “go viral” drives us ever forward in acts of oversharing that wouldn’t have been considered 15 years ago.

The anonymity and distance enjoyed by bigoted minds allow them to hurl caustic abuse at any who catch their eye. The pack mentality rules here as like minds stick together and reinforce the belief that they are right and any who disagrees being marked as an overly sensitive “snowflakes”.

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A woman sitting down looking across a lake
Dec 07

How to Improve Mental Health by Practically Applying Mindfulness

By Rishin | Get Mindful

Practically Applying Mindfulness by Andrian Drew of Yugen.

Mindfulness is simply the act of being present. It is the foundation of meditation, the catalyst of nirvana and, as I like to call it, ‘medicine for the mind’.

As Eckhart Tolle proclaims in ‘The Power of Now’, presentness is the antidote to all suffering. Accepting this moment forces all emotional turmoil to lose its power; we stop resisting our current mental state and allow ourselves simply to be, and subsequently, suffering renders futile in our state of true mindfulness.

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A man walking along a bridge in the snow
Dec 07

Why Would They Accept Me When I Can’t Accept Myself?

By Rishin | Mental Health: What You Need to Know

Alone in a world not ready to accept people like me, a world where I must hide how I feel and bury my fears behind persona that don’t represent who I am because I don’t know who I am.

I feel that I am nothing more than the masks I wear. Remove them and there is a hollow behind waiting but not knowing what for. All of this has led to me desperately trying to fill that void, to find meaning and feeling in my surroundings.

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Stand Tall Little Girl Book cover
Nov 21

Stand Tall Little Girl Review

By Rishin | No-Nonsense Book Reviews

Stand Tall Little Girl is a beautifully written, heart rending, account of Hope Virgo’s battle with anorexia.

This powerful story gives the reader a glimpse into Hope’s life from childhood, her hospitalisation as a teen when anorexia almost killed her, to finally becoming “Hope Virgo – survivor”.

This review contains affiliate links.

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Nov 12

Meditation Challenge

By Rishin | Discover Mindful Listening

Meditation and mindfulness seems to be everywhere these days. Have you ever asked yourself “how do I meditate?”

Rooted in Buddhist practice it has been readily taken up by Western audiences looking for a way to manage the stresses of daily life but what is mindfulness?

Read on to discover a quick five minute meditation to start your mindfulness practice today.

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A man holding his head in pain.
Sep 05

A morning in the life of a Cluster Headache survivor

By Rishin | Awareness: Challenging Ignorance & Fighting Stigma

I awoke to a bomb going off in my head, the smell of stale coffee and cigarettes lingering in my mind from last night’s dream. The cacophony coming from downstairs signalled that the daily ritual of the school run had begun, the patter of tiny feet having long been replaced by a tribal dance. Light from the hall hit me like a bullet to the brain, burning away any hope that this would be a reasonable day.

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