MH Letter #2: An open letter to my buddy Mel

“Dear Melissa

I don’t know where to start to be honest. I don’t know where to start other than with these two words: Thank you. Thank you so much for being there for me, thank you for talking to me, but most of all thank you for being you.

I remember the end of the summer where I was struggling a lot. Struggling with diagnose of my Anxiety, Depression and OCD. I thought I was lost, stuck and not ready to confront any form of light yet. As the days grew darker and the light seemed lost forever, it was your soul shining bright that pulled me back to the light. You were my angel.

I’ve made a lot of friends since then who are all very supportive and lovely in their own way, but I’ve come to realise that it wasn’t possible if it wasn’t for you. You took time out of your life to talk to me, support me, reassure me and help me. You took time to get to know me, learning about my flaws and my qualities. Always remembering me that I’m loved and showed me the way to go, even when you were struggling yourself. And for that I’m so so grateful. I’m one lucky guy to call you my friend.

It’s great that you check in once a while, just to see how I am doing and to have a little chat. You never fail to answer my messages, be it on twitter or whatsapp. You are truly a treasure to us all and I’ve told a lot of my online friend about you, because you inspire us every day.

There hasn’t been a day where I didn’t ask myself, how would Mel be doing on this day and during the times you had to take time for selfcare and selflove – which is fantastic and I salute you – I genuinely missed talking to you. You are like a big sister to me and I care for you.

Not only are you uncommonly kind and sweet. You tweets crack me up – I mean laughing obviously, not anything else.. – and your care & love for people fills me with joy. You are not only such a nice person to me, but to everyone else! You are incredible Mel. I’ll cherish you forever.
During our conversations I’ve noticed how brilliant, creative and intelligent you are. AND LET’S TALK ABOUT YOUR BLOG OMG. It’s amaaaaazing! Your blogname is as brilliant as your content and I’m inspired by it every day. You were one of my blogging idols and to get to know your idol is a bit controversial people always say. But you are the idol that is different. I love that we are friends now and you make this world so much better, by shining your light on it. Never never never forget how much you mean to all of us.

I would also like to thank you for introducing me to your friend and now mine – at least I consider him my mate now haha- Josh. You have made me aware of him and his kindness. His blog and his support are brilliant and that’s why our community is so valued by everyone, because of the ability to share our experiences and our lovely friends. So once again thank you so much.

I hope you know, I’m here for you. Always. For a chat. For a laugh. For support. I’m here for you, because I’m your friend. Sending you all the love and hugs.

Your friend,

Marc


This letter was written as part of my new #MHLetters series. You can read more about it here.
For the first letter to Rachel, click here

You can follow Melissa on the following spaces:

Blog: Geek Magnifique
Twitter: @geekmagnifique

Instagram: @geekmagnifique

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MH Letter #1: An open letter to my friend Rachel

Dear Rachel,

You are the first of my friends that will ‘receive’ an open letter on my blog. You might not know it yet, but I really do admire you a lot and I’m happy to call you my friend. (Well at least I do, I don’t know about you though haha)

We haven’t spoken a lot I suppose, but you are one the most genuine and sweet, kind person I know of. Your soul is honest and sweet, every time you talk about something that is close to your heart (obviously pizza too), we -your- friends are so intrigued with what you got to say.

I think we’ve talked a lot more since the first #TalkMH chat and I learnt that you studied in the same city as me. You are a Dutch & German graduate, languages I know fluently. Which is not a big shocker considering I’m Dutch, but y’know.

Your blog is very inspiring to me. First of all, the name is fantastic! No space for Milk, that’s so catchy. You know like, the first weeks you don’t refer to people’s real name, but their twitter handle? You were no space for milk all the time, but I’m glad I’ve now turned to Rachel haha. I absolutely love your blog: mental health and lifestyle. I think I qualify in the same blogger category, but you have been one my idols. Like all the blogger gals say: such a babe.

But what spoke out the most about you, is obviously your personality. You are so kind and sweet, you have helped a lot of people when struggling and you have raised awareness for mental health and still do. For that I’m forever in your debt because you do such good work and you inspire me to do that too. Not only are you kind, but you are incredibly funny. Your tweets make me laugh on a daily basis and I couldn’t get through the days without those funny tweets. Especially everything with pizza is my fave.

You have proven to be very intelligent and I can see that on twitter and your blog. You are very intelligent in the way you talk to people, explain things and take everything in consideration. You are intelligent enough to have studied Dutch and German, which are not the easiest languages to learn, but you did it! I can say, I’m actually very proud of you Rachel.

We all know it isn’t easy dealing with mental health issues and illnesses, but you got this pal. You are so incredibly strong. You are tough. Remember that giving in to your mental illness or problem is not the end of the world. It’s not about winning or losing battles; it’s about winning the war.

I once wrote a poem which many of my friends have read and you did too, but I want to share it with you one more time, because you are so much stronger than you think you are:

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One’s strength is not measured in muscles
lifting or physicality
It’s not in what you appear to be
Or what other think you are
strength is measured in endurance
Patience, will, speech
and actions.
All of these qualities
Will be found in you
Like how Zeus’s lightening
Split up the good from evil
As strong are you
What makes you strong
Is the will to go on
Not give up
You are truly
inspiring
motivating
caring and above all
the strongest person I know.
You are like when a flower grows through a crack in the concrete
It’s so fucking heroic. 
Shine on you diamond ❤️

You have a beautiful personality and bless your soul for being an incredible friend. I can’t wait to meet you sometime, keep shining you lovely diamond!

Your pal,

Marc”

This letter was written as part of my new #MHLetters series. You can read more about it here.

You can follow Rachel on the following spaces:

Blog: No space for Milk
Twitter: @nospaceformilk

Instagram: @nospaceformilk

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‘You can’t be a feminist, you’re a bloke’

You must be thinking, what the hell is going on right here?! Marc get a grip, you are a man. Why would you want to blog about something that doesn’t effect you or has any benefit for you. This is the problem in my opinion, let’s break down feminism for this blogpost. Because men can be feminists too.

Let’s begin at the beginning. A few months back I wrote blogpost about how it’s important to focus on mental health and in particular for men. I wrote that because the statistics show that suicide amongst men is higher and combine that with the social expectations of men & emotions, well you can do the math. I just wanted to give the men a voice and raise awareness of the fact that we should all be able to talk about our emotions freely. No matter if you are a woman or a man.

The reactions I got were, overwhelming. Yeah, that’s a good word for it. A lot of it was very positive and I’ve made great friends because of it. But on the other hand I got some shocking reactions as well to be honest. You can categorise them in two groups. One group were the tough guys who described me as weak and as homosexual. Because obviously your sexual orientation is defined by your amount of crying. *sigh*
The other group were women who thought I was putting men above women and therefore I was the enemy. I was anti-women and it was ‘obvious’ to those women, that I was a typical man. They emailed me frequently and still do, always signed with their name and the title: Feminist.

Needless to say I was hurt. I don’t think I was hurt because of the negative reactions, but I think the nature of the reactions hurt me. Especially from the so-called Feminists. I mean, it’s not very nice to be called a misogynist every other week, now is it? I perceive myself as a very supportive lad who doesn’t make any distinction between the sexes at all. I talked about it with friends both male and female and they all told me the same thing basically: Let it go.

Other than singing the Frozen-film song, I couldn’t let it pass like that. It kept me up at night. It consumed me fam, I started to doubt myself so much. Am I unkind to women? Am I not putting enough effort in? Do women really hate me? Is that the reason my relationships have ended, because I’m perceived as misogynist due to some actions? I cried a lot because of it and I honestly didn’t know what do with myself and with the whole situation.

So to make sure how I felt about this all and to make sure I could join the debate with people who think the same way as my ‘lovely’ critics do, I decided to look up the definition of what Feminism means.

“Feminism is a range of political movements, ideologies and social movements that share a common goal: to define, establish, and achieve political, economic, personal and social rights for women.”

When I look at that definition I think: Yeah, yes! This feels good, I’m all behind it! But somehow the idea of men being feminists is made non-existent or perceived as something you cannot be. Because men are privileged and every man in his right mind wouldn’t want that to go away, right? Pff, what is with society, that we can’t support each other without being punished for doing so?

It’s only natural that more women are involved in feminism, because it’s ‘their’ fight. They have not been given the same privileges as men, for a long time. And even now, in this day and age, it’s bloody difficult for some girls and women to be treated as equals, because some men perceive women as inferior. Bollocks if you ask me.

This all adds to the thought of men wanting to be superior, but that’s not the case. By fighting for gender-equality, you will only grow. As a person and as gender. It hurts me when people say I can’t fight for the rights of women. It hurts me when people call me anti-women and misogynist, because I happen to be a man.


We men have a role to play in feminism. Not only is it our job to support women and fight alongside them from the outside. We should look into the mirror and say: Let’s fucking end this. Let’s do it. It’s our duty, we are all the same and it’s time for us to get our head out of our arse and start living as we ought to do. I’m very passionate about this and won’t stop talking about it, won’t stop advocating and I will always support the cause.

I’m Marc, I’m 24 years old and I’m Dutch. I’m a football obsessed blogger suffering from anxiety, depression and OCD who also is a feminist. I love women. Yes, I’m a feminist and I will fight for the rights of every girl and woman on this planet. We are all the same.

Please let me know if I have said anything offensive, I intended no harm.

What do you think of feminism? Is it purely a female thing or is it something we should all fight for?

Marc





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#MHLetters Update!

Hello lovely people, how are you all doing? A few days back I had the ‘brilliant’ idea to give each other some more love during the winter. I would love for people to express their love and gratitude to those struggling and receiving that seem love as well.
I wanted to give a little update on the idea and make a bit clear. This is what I wrote in the last post:

“BUT, I wanted to do something to. Organise something. Express my gratitude to all the lovely bloggers. So I was taking a shower – we all know, the most brilliant ideas come from underneath the modern waterfall, AM I RIGHT?! – and then it hit me. Why not create something were we use our blogs to spread love, comfort and support to each other? Write open letters to each other and spread the love, raising the awareness and let people honestly know what it’s to deal with mental health issues.

No matter how you feel, it’s always great to receive love. I want people to feel loved and appreciated, I want people to spread out that love and appreciation, because all of you are so worthy of it. I love you all and I want you all to shine, like you deserve

You can write a letter to someone with talking about certain things, a few examples:

– Asking how the person is
– How he/she is coping with their mental health
– Let them know what it is that you love/appreciate about them
– Raise awareness for mental health issues or mental illnesses
– Ask them about the december festivities
– Talk about their blog, the Mail Swap or how you think TalkMH has helped you.

So what’s the plan? It would be great if a lot of people want to be involved with this, it such a good idea to spread all the love. If you want to participate in this, let me know before November 23rd and after that we will start the letter exchange. I will then post all the people who want to involved and we can all send each other open letters.”

What I would love to see it that you write a letter to someone you admire, love or who can use the kinds words we all have to offer. If you don’t feel comfortable by publishing it on your blog, you can also send an email or a real letter.

You can just pick anyone you like, but I would suggest to write an open letter on your blog to a person you don’t know that well yet. I think writing to multiple person will only spread the love more and keep this movement going.

I hope you really want to come aboard with my little idea and that we can spread the love in these times, we all need this love from time to time! If you post the link to your blogpost on twitter, make sure to use the #MHLetters and #TalkMH hashtags!

I will do my first open letter on monday! So if you want to have an idea on how it can be done!:)

Here are the persons that have shown interest in the whole idea, no restrictions whatsoever. I want it to be free and your own choice to write to persons you want. Just a suggestion if you don’t know who to write to:

@laurenevie_  – http://www.laurenevie.co.uk/

@whateverwordsuk – https://whateverwordsblog.wordpress.com/
@laurajswift – https://laurajswiftblog.wordpress.com/

@Vickatronic – https://sirvikalot.wordpress.com/
@mindlessmuso – https://mindlessmuso.wordpress.com/
@PorcelainNIvory – http://porcelainnivory.blogspot.co.uk/
@nospaceformilk – https://nospaceformilk.com/
@lauracloughley – https://ellejc.com/
@mblog101 – http://www.thementalhealthblogger.com/
@MillerAndMe – http://millerandmee.blogspot.com/

If you are interested and what to join, that’s always possible! Comment below or send me a DM or mail me at buggerallblog@gmail.com

Marc

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Things you shouldn’t say to someone who suffers from depression

I have no idea what’s wrong with me today. I’m so exhausted, knackered. Something is getting me down and it’s doing my head in that a lot of people have said pretty hurtful stuff to me lately. I’m not saying that people are wanting to harm or hurt me in one way or another, but it’s does touch my soul. It hurts me and today, I’m not having it. I’m done with all this shite and I wanted to share with you, all the things that have been said to me over the last months, which do hurt my soul.
These are hurtful for me personally, but they could be completely different to someone else. Depression is universal, it isn’t the same for everyone and I don’t say I’m the all knowing doctor or something. Just want talk to you guys, I guess.

1. “Will you stop that constant whining? What makes you think that anyone cares?”
2. “Have you gotten tired yet of all this me-me-me stuff?”
3. “You just need to give yourself a kick in the rear.”
4. “But it’s all in your mind.”
5. “I thought you were stronger than that.”
6. “No one ever said life was fair.”
7. “As you get stronger you won’t have to wallow in it as much.”
8. “Pull yourself up by your bootstraps.”
9. “Do you feel better now?”

10. “Why don’t you just grow up?”

11. “Stop feeling sorry for yourself.”
12. “There are a lot of people worse off than you?”
13. “You have it so good, why aren’t you happy?”
14. “It’s a beautiful day!”
15. “You have so many things to be thankful for, why are you depressed!”
16. “What do you have to be depressed about”.
17. “Happiness is a choice”
18. “You think *you’ve* got problems…”
19. “Well at least it’s not that bad.”
20. “Maybe you should take vitamins for your stress.”
21. “There is always somebody worse off than you are.”
22. “Lighten up!”
23. “You should get off all those pills.”
24. “You are what you think.”
25. “Cheer up!”
26. “You’re always feeling sorry for yourself.”
27. “Why can’t you just be normal?”
28. “Things aren’t *that* bad, are they?”
29. “You don’t like feeling that way? So, change it.”
30. “You need to get out more.”
31. “We have to get together some time.” 
32. “Get a grip!”
33. “Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
34. “Take a hot bath. That’s what I always do when I’m upset.”
35. “Well, everyone gets depressed sometimes!”
36. “Get a job!”
37. “Smile and the world smiles with you, cry and you cry alone.”
38. “You don’t *look* depressed!”
39. “You’re so selfish!”
40. “You never think of anyone but yourself.”
41. “You’re just looking for attention.”
42. “Depression is a symptom of your sin against God.”
43. “You’ll be a better person because of it!”
44. “Everybody has a bad day now and then.”
45. “You should buy nicer clothes to wear.”
46. “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.”
47. “Why don’t you smile more?”
48. “A person your age should be having the time of your life.”
49. “The only one you’re hurting is yourself.”
50. “You can do anything you want if you just set your mind to it.”
Marc

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