UK followers, listen up!

So, the ‘huge’ and ‘exciting’ news I alluded to here last week… it’s about time I added some more information I think!

On Friday I spent an interesting hour on the phone to a documentary-maker called Emily. She is working with a team on a on a 90 minute documentary for the BBC which will explore young people’s (aged 16-25) experiences of living with mental illness, from their own unique perspective.

  • We talked about how half of those with lifetime mental health problems first experience symptoms by the age of 14, but are often too nervous of stigma and discrimination to tell anyone, or have their problems written off as ‘part of being a teenager’.
  • We talked about the horrible reality of much expression of emotional distress in young people (particularly self harm) being branded ‘attention-seeking’, and how problematic this is (what sort of society sees fit to ignore or punish someone for expressing that they’re struggling?!)
  • We talked about intersectionality (how the experience of living with mental illness varies hugely from person to person according to all sorts of factors such as race, culture, gender identity, sexuality, economic factors, access to services, diagnoses etc.) and how they’re hoping to attract a diverse range of contributors from all sorts of backgrounds, with various diagnoses, from across the country to paint a true picture of youth mental health in the UK.

She explained to me that the documentary will follow the lives of a group of young people over the period of a few months this year. Rather than the usual format with a professional team filming on location, the contributors will be the film-makers! They will be encouraged to film video diaries, conversations with friends and family, and to take their cameras (which can be lent to them if they don’t already have one) out into the world as they navigate their day to day activities living with mental illness. They will receive feedback and help from the documentary team where needed as they upload their videos regularly.

Listening to what she had to say I got some great vibes. Their idea of empowering an often disempowered (young, disabled) demographic to tell their own story in their own voice sounds like a great idea to me. My concern about contributors’ well-being was allayed by her assertion that a consultant psychologist will be on hand to monitor people’s contributions as they upload them, so that appropriate help can be co-ordinated if it seems like someone isn’t doing so well.

Anyway, I’m proud to say that I will be contributing to this process. If you are aged 16-25 and are living in the UK with a mental illness or mental illnesses and are interested in doing so too, send an e-mail to

As ever, keep safe,


(Source: mindovermatterzine)


  1. with-theseasons reblogged this from mindovermatterzine and added:
    So I just had my first phone call with Sarah from Firecracker Films and I am very excited! Hopefully the producer likes...
  2. ellakrystina reblogged this from fluffyfemme and added:
    tldr; Anyone aged 16-25 (UK only) living with a mental illness who would like to help in a documentary on mental illness...
  3. fluffyfemme reblogged this from loveintheshadowsistheonlykind
  4. a-curious-creature reblogged this from loveintheshadowsistheonlykind
  5. hopesyndrome reblogged this from mindovermatterzine
  6. loveintheshadowsistheonlykind reblogged this from mindovermatterzine and added:
    Sounds like it could be pretty good. UK followers “aged 16-25 and living with a mental illness or mental illnesses”,...
  7. hellosweetieforgetthespoilers reblogged this from sprite-wings and added:
    This is so tempting :o
  8. sellinqsolace reblogged this from sprite-wings
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  18. preppymarxist reblogged this from mindovermatterzine and added:
    signal boosting!