After having written previous articles about delegate Sarah Yong’s motion on under provision in mental health, my own experiences with mental health, and the recent statements by Ed Miliband regarding Labour’s policy on mental health, I want to add a final footnote to the series.
It is clear from comments on this website that Liberal Democrats care a great deal about this issue and so will be heartened by the recent work Norman Lamb has done to put mental health on an equal footing with physical health in the NHS mandate.
There was a stage a few weeks ago when I thought I had finally beaten all of the problems I have been having. Fat chance. Over the last few days I have had a major crash and have hit rock bottom – sleepless nights, physical shakes and numerous breakdowns.
The point is that I have realised now that feeling sorry for yourself gets you nowhere. I have been very, very close to giving up completely recently. I know that the future will be horrific and traumatic at times, but I also know I will try to get through it – because there is no other choice.
On a side note, I always find it bizarre, how when you are experiencing something in your personal life, there seem to be constant reminders – even in the national press. In last week’s Independent there was an extremely profound article by the paper’s foreign correspondent, Patrick Cockburn, concerning his experiences of mental health provision in the NHS, when his son Henry was living in various institutions because of his schizophrenic illness.
I really want to get two points across with this.
Firstly, Mental Health affects everyone and it has surely never been higher up on the political agenda. Lib Dems should be shouting about this from the rooftops and making sure that people are fully aware that this is the only party which has genuinely been pushing this to the top of the political agenda.
If there are any people who read this who want to share any comments about their own experiences, then it would be great to hear them. I know writing about this has helped me in some small way and I hope it can help others too.
* Tim Purkiss is a party member from Somerset and blogs at Nation Discussion