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Help! I suffer from a mental illness

Dear Sam,

I was recently diagnosed with a disability. I was upset and felt sick. I am worried to tell my freinds. My mum has told the teacher and she is fully aware. She won't tell anyone. But I am getting depresses. I don't know why but I think it is because I am going up to big school and I am not ready. What should I do?

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Sam

Hi there,

Being told you have a disability or mental health illness can be hard to accept or understand. And it can affect the way we think and feel. To others we may seem fine, but it might be really hard to cope.

It’s natural to feel low or unhappy sometimes. But when feelings like this carry on and get in the way it's always helpful to talk to someone and seek help. Often if you visit your doctor or nurse they can explain what’s going on and offer treatment and in some cases, medication.

It’s normal to feel worried about other people finding out. You might feel embarrassed or scared that they’ll treat you differently. Or perhaps not want to be your friend any more. Sometimes it can help to prepare to talk to someone you trust about things like this. Choosing the right time and place can help. It can also help to have information like leaflets from your doctor, to help others understand your diagnosis and what it will mean for you and them.

It's ok to go back to the doctor and ask for further support and explain that changes are coming for you, like school, which can be hard to cope with.

You can always talk to a counsellor too. They can help you to find ways to cope with difficult situations. Visiting the message boards can help too. Here other young people share their stories and offer each other support as well as talking about how they've coped with similar situations. 

Take care,
Sam

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