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September 2017

Mental Health Interviews, We All Have a Story #1

Hey, Nerdy Peeps! Here is the first interview for the new series called, Mental Health Interviews, We All Have a Story. This will be a series of 6 questions to get to know the people behind their mental health journies.  Also, if the interviewees have a blog, I will feature their links so you can find them.

Mental Health Interview with Ami May

mental health interviews
This Ribbon symbolizes BPD/EUPD
  1. What is your mental health issue?
    • I have Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) also known as Emotional Unstable Personality Disorder (EUPD), Depression & Anxiety. 
  2. When were you diagnosed?
    • I was diagnosed when I was 18 (2011) after a short stay in the psychiatric ward at the hospital.
  3. Do your family and friends know?
    • Yes, my mum and I were fighting with the doctors for years, I eventually got into Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) which focused on family therapy which was fine except my father didn’t come so it was pretty pointless. Anyway, my mum has always been my main support, she was and still is the one that keeps my head above water, supported me and always been there no matter what. My boyfriend got with me 6 months before I was diagnosed and we have learned together how to cope with my mental health and be supportive. I don’t have real-life friends, I have few online friends which I’m quite happy with. 
  4. Has your mental health issue stopped you from doing anything?
    • I dropped out of college due to my mental health worsening, I then went onto job seekers allowance (JSA) then onto Employment Support Allowance (ESA) & Disability Living Allowance (DLA) as I am unable to work. I wouldn’t cope with the stress, I am not good in any social situation. I rarely leave the house at all and only a couple of times a week with my career or someone else. I guess it ruined my dream of becoming a social worker or supporting child and adults with learning difficulties. But, it has led me to my new and old love of books, English literature, writing etc. I want to become an author one day and help people through my books/novels. 
  5. What helps you the most to fight your mental health issue?
    • First and for most, my mum definitely. She is always there to pick me up when I fall, When I’m not thinking straight she is there to correct me when I need the brutally honest truth she is right there. The reason I am as strong as I can be is that I’ve had my mum to look up too. I have to mention my little brother who was born when I was 14, he is the light of my life. He looks up to me so I have to appear strong, brave and keep on fighting for him. And finally my Dad (stepdad) and my other half Jake of 6 years. And finally BOOKS, BOOKS and more BOOKS. It allows me to escape reality, travel to new places, it helps me cope by distracting me. Books are a coping strategy on paper. 
  6. What is your advice for anyone else struggling with a mental illness?
    • Never give up. I know life is shite and no matter how dark that black hole is, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Make sure you have a good support network, talk to them; if you can attend all your psychiatrist appointments and just work with them. Don’t listen to those who say that medication doesn’t fix you, they are right but they’re not supposed to completely fix you. They are there as a helping strategy; it may take you a while to find the right mix but keep on going. Any help is good help, right? 

Ami-May Thorpe
Shyla’s Uncensored Opinions

Ami also gave me some of her favorite quotes! So, I am going to share them with you because they are perfect! (Her links will be attached to the quote graphics!)

Ami’s Favorite Quotes

mental health interviews
mental health interviews
Her Blog


mental health interviews
Her Twitter

If you want to be interviewed and be featured? Please let me know in the comments, and we will get together!
You can also email me at!

Mental Health Interviews, We All Have a Story

Mental Health Interviews, We All Have a Story

Hey, Nerdy Peeps! As you can tell by the title, I am starting a new series on my blog called, Mental Health Interviews, We All Have a Story. I wanted to start this series so that people with mental health battles can get their story out there in order for others to understand what our journey looks like.

So, I thought I would start the process and answer the questions I have come up with. You can also find my story in some many other posts and I will link them at the end of this post.

mental health interviews, we all have a story

Mental Health Interview with Myself

  1. What is your mental health issue?
    • I have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and chronic depression.
  2. When were you diagnosed?
    • I am not sure on the month but I know it was in 2015, and that is also when I started taking medication to help me with my battle.
  3. Do your family and friends know?
    • Yes, and they are super supportive and have learned so much more about me, thanks for me sharing my story with them.
  4. Has your mental health issue stopped you from doing anything?
    • I hate social situations with a lot of people. It gets hard to breathe and I have to stay on the outer edges so I can have a quick escape.
  5. What helps you the most to fight your mental health issue?
    • There are a few of these. The first would be reading this is the best way to escape from my world away from all the chaos in my head. I can enter a whole new world and not worry about mine.
    • Then writing would be the next one. I can get all my thoughts and feelings out of me and onto paper and it helps so much in my coping process.
    • My emotional support animal (ESA) Hopper! He is the all-time best thing to ever come into my life. I can’t explain how he does it, but he knows exactly when my anxiety isn’t getting to the point where I need help with calming down and he is right there.
    • Finally, would be my amazing husband. I honestly don’t know where I would be if I didn’t have him to dump all my issues out on. He is an amazing listener and gives some great advice when I need it. He’s also learned that there are times when I don’t want to talk and he will just leave me be.
  6. What is your advice for anyone else struggling with a mental illness?
    • You are never alone. There is always someone out there who is going to listen and talk to you to help you get through whatever you are going through. Also, my other piece of advice would be to NEVER GIVE UP! You are so strong and amazing that the world will always need you in it. Hang on to whatever you can and you will make it through this mental health battle.

mental health interviews, we all have a story

We All Have a Story

I want this series to be a way for people to open up about their mental health journies. Also, for them to see they are not alone. Maybe through this series, people can connect and find their mental health buddy. I remember when I felt alone when it came to my mental health and I never want anyone else to feel the way I did. These interviews are a way for people to not be scared to share their stories. They are also a way to get more education out there about different mental health issues.

Requesting an interview?

You can comment on this post with your email and I will get back to you. Or you can email me at!

First interview is coming tomorrow! 

Find my story and battles in these links:

What My Mental Illness has Taught Me!

My Fight

A Letter to My Depression


Falling into the Pages

Hey, Nerdy Peeps! It’s Fall time, and that means I have to bring you book recommendations for Fall! Plus, it is also my favorite time of year. I get to watch the leaves change and get to decorate with all the awesome fall decor! And of course, my birthday is in October, so it makes Fall that much better!

Books for Fall…

These books are perfect to get your spooky read on. So, grab your favorite blanket or pillow to hide behind because here come the recommendations!

Blind Stitches by J.B. Chicoine

A crazy family, a wedding, a funeral, and a love story? Sounds like the perfect story. Which is also set around the fall of the Berlin wall, and the Autumn of 1989.  So, can a seamstress look beyond the craziness of the family of the boy she’s building a relationship with or will she let them keep their secrets and move on?

Book Blurb: Meanwhile, talented young seamstress Juliet Glitch has been putting the finishing touches on the wedding dress. Mother of the bride—former prima ballerina and Russian expatriate—asks Juliet if she ‘would hem her blind son Nikolai’s trousers for the funeral’ … and the wedding.

falling into the pages

The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury

I love me some Ray Bradbury! (Even though I have only read one of his books!) His writing style can sweep away and get you lost in any story. So, to find a book for Halloween written by him is a definite need for my collection. This book is a tale of some boys who are going to check out a haunted house but one of them gets swept away by a “dark Something.” That’s all I’m giving from the blurb!

Book Blurb: I want you to go in not knowing much, but I’ve read the blurb so I’ll leave you a little something. “…boys on the tail of a kite through time and space to search the past for their friend and the meaning of Halloween.” (Booklist/Goodreads)

falling into the pages

The Midnight Carnival by Various authors

This is a book with 13 short stories, full of Halloween goodness. From the blurb, I am assuming they all coincide with each other, but I am not sure. I will have to read to find out! The blurb explains more than I can. Plus, I also love carnivals, so this is a must-read for me!

Book Blurb: On Halloween, a strange carnival comes to town. The gates open at sunset, and the attractions are all one of a kind: faery magic under the big top masked demons on the midway, carnies greeting crowds with sharp-toothed smiles. Those who go and come back have tales to tell that linger with them long after the carnival is gone. Those who go and never come back… well. There are stories that linger about them, too.

falling into the pages

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson & Laura Miller

Take a group of people to check if a house is haunted and you have this book. Just Kidding! You have a haunted house with a big secret, it wants to take one of the characters as its own. All I can say is definitely take a haunted house seriously, you never know what is lurking in the shadows.

Book Blurb: At first, their stay seems destined to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena. But Hill House is gathering its powers—and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

falling into the pages

I can’t wait to check out these spooky reads for Fall/Halloween. They look and sound like they are going to be so much fun to read.

What are your go-to reads for Fall/Halloween? How do you like reading these type of stories? 



Spotlight Sunday: Mental Health Books

Hey, Nerdy Peeps! Today’s spotlight Sunday came to me thanks to a fellow book blogging friend. We got to talking about a new series she wanted to start and it brought up some books she was wanting to read. Now, I want to read those books also. So, here is your Spotlight Sunday with some mental health books!

Recommendations From Shyla’s Uncensored Opinions!

Reason’s To Stay Alive by Matt Haig 

From the synopsis of this book, it is totally something I want to read. I am big on choosing to live and living life to the fullest and this book teaches you exactly that. It’ll teach you to make the best of your life while you have the time to live it. This book is also from Matt’s perspective of almost ending is life, so he gives you the best opinions on why choosing to live is so important.

Book Blurb: I want life. I want to read it and write it and feel it and live it. I want, for as much of the time as possible in this blink-of-an-eye existence we have, to feel all that can be felt. I hate depression. I am scared of it. Terrified, in fact. But at the same time, it has made me who I am. And if – for me – it is the price of feeling life, it’s a price always worth paying.

Spotlight Sunday Mental Health Books

Mad Girl: A happy life with a mixed up mind by Bryony Gordon

Just by the title, this book makes sense for my life; “A happy mind with a mixed-up life.” My mind is always happy (well despite my depression), but it is always a little mixed up. In this book, it seems like Bryony is going to give insight into her life with mental illness and how to live with it. She is going to be flat-out honest and give you the absolute truth in her mental health journey.

Book Blurb: It’s the snake in her brain that has told her ever since she was a teenager that her world is about to come crashing down: that her family might die if she doesn’t repeat a phrase 5 times, or that she might have murdered someone and forgotten about it. It’s caused alopecia, bulimia, and drug dependency. And Bryony is sick of it. Keeping silent about her illness has given it a cachet it simply does not deserve, so here she shares her story with trademark wit and dazzling honesty.

Spotlight Sunday Mental Health Books

A Life Without You by Katie Marsh 

This book doesn’t seem to fall under the mental illness category, but it is still one that has gripped my attention. A Life Without You brings you the story of a mother and daughter who haven’t seen each other in years, but the mother needs help. She is slowly losing her memory and the only one to help her is her daughter. Can helping her mother, also help her? Is the past really meant to stay in the past?

Book Blurb: It’s Zoe’s wedding day. She’s about to marry Jamie, the love of her life. Then a phone call comes out of the blue, with the news that her mum Gina has been arrested. Zoe must make an impossible decision: should she leave her own wedding to help?

Spotlight Sunday Mental Health Books

I Hate You, Don’t Leave Me – Understanding the Borderline Personality by Jerold J. Kreisman & Hal Straus

I personally do not associate with Borderline Personality Disorder, but it is something I have been wanting to learn about. So, when Ami (aka Shyla’s Uncensored Opinions) mentioned this book, I was like Yes!, this is perfect. This is a book that will help me understand another mental illness so much better. I may have anxiety and depression, but I want to learn more about other illnesses, so this book is a good one to start with this.

Book Blurb: People with Borderline Personality Disorder experience such violent and frightening mood swings that they often fear for their sanity. They can be euphoric one moment, despairing and depressed the next.

Spotlight Sunday Mental Health Books

So, here are the books I wanted to share for Spotlight Sunday! I can’t wait to get these books in my possession and hopefully get some reviews out for them. If you want to check out any mental health books and think I would like to read them share them with me.

You can find Shyla’s Uncensored Opinions Facebook here! (click her picture!)


Which mental health books have you read? Let me know if you have read any of the ones I have mentioned!

Writing For Bliss Book Tour

writing for bliss book tour

writing for bliss book tour NEW RELEASE…
A Seven-Step Plan For Telling Your Story and Transforming Your Life

Writing for Bliss is most fundamentally about reflection, truth, and freedom. With techniques and prompts for both the seasoned and novice writer, it will lead you to tap into your creativity through storytelling and poetry, examine how life-changing experiences can inspire writing, pursue self-examination and self-discovery through the written word, and, understand how published writers have been transformed by writing.

Poet and memoirist Raab (Lust) credits her lifelong love of writing and its therapeutic effects with inspiring her to write this thoughtful and detailed primer that targets pretty much anyone interested in writing a memoir. Most compelling here is Raab’s willingness to share her intimate stories (e.g., the loss of a relative, ongoing struggles with cancer, a difficult relationship with her mother). Her revelations are encouraging to writers who feel they need “permission to take… a voyage of self-discovery.” The book’s seven-step plan includes plenty of guidance, including on learning to “read like a writer,” and on addressing readers as if “seated across the table .” Raab covers big topics such as the “art and power of storytelling” and small details such as choosing pens and notebooks that you enjoy using. She also helps readers with the important step of “finding your form.”

Available to buy from….   GPlay   Barnes and Noble   Paperback

From Loving Healing Press

“Writing for Bliss is about the profound ways in which we may be transformed in and through the act of writing. I am grateful to Diana Raab for sharing it, and I trust that you will feel the same as you read on. May you savor the journey.”
–from the foreword by MARK FREEMAN, PhD 

“By listening to ourselves and being aware of what we are saying and feeling, the true story of our life’s past experience is revealed. Diana Raab’s book gives us the insights by which we can achieve this through her life-coaching wisdom and our writing.”
–BERNIE SIEGEL, MD, author of The Art of Healing 

“Only a talented writer who has fought hard to overcome life’s many obstacles could take her readers by the hand and lead them through
the writing process with such enormous compassion, amazing insight, and kindness. Diana Raab is a powerful, wise, intelligent guide well worth our following.”

–JAMES BROWN, author of The Los Angeles Diaries and The River 

“Writing for Bliss is far more than a ‘how-to manual’; it enlightens the creative process with wisdom and a delightful sense of adventure. Bravo to Bliss!”
–LINDA GRAY SEXTON, author of Searching for Mercy Street: My Journey Back to My Mother, Anne Sexton 

“Uniquely blending inspiring insights with practical advice, Diana guides you on a path to discover the story that is truly inside you and yearning to be told.”
–PATRICK SWEENEY, coauthor of the New York Times bestseller Succeed on Your Own Terms


“Through my writing, mentoring and workshops, I guide others to discover and tell their own unique stories and abiding truths. The craft and practice of writing can be transformative and empowering—a cornerstone for emotional and psychological well-being, and a way to tap into one’s true inner voice and passions.” — Diana Raab

Other books by the author…
writing for bliss book tour

Writing For Bliss Review

I can definitely say I am so thankful I came across this book. It has given me exactly what I needed to find my hope back through writing. Not only does it help you learn the writing process, but it will also help with self-discovery and that no matter what you will never be alone. It will teach you patience and give you a way to find a journey through your words. Diana has such an easy way of writing and a beautiful way of putting words into hope. This was by far one of the most amazing self-help books I have read in a long time.

This was by far one of the most amazing self-help books I have read in a long time.  The writing prompts helped me with things I thought I was completely done struggling with. Now, I can pick up writing where I have left of in my books I started because I have all the tools I need to get my writing done.  It’s also the best piece of therapy I will proudly keep on my Kindle.

You definitely need to add this book to your collection, especially if you have ever found that writing is the best form of therapy for whatever you’re going through.

**I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, I have volunteered to share my review and all the opinions are 100% my own.**


About the author
Diana Raab, Ph.D. is an award-winning memoirist, poet, blogger, workshop leader and speaker. Her passion is writing for healing and transformation.

She’s the author of eight books and over 500 articles and poems, and editor of two anthologies, WRITERS ON THE EDGE: 22 WRITERS SPEAK ABOUT ADDICTION AND DEPENDENCY and WRITERS AND THEIR NOTEBOOKS. Raab’s two memoirs are REGINA’S CLOSET: FINDING MY GRANDMOTHER’S SECRET JOURNAL and HEALING WITH WORDS: A WRITER’S CANCER JOURNEY. Her fourth and most recent poetry collection is called LUST.

Raab has been writing since the age of 10 when her mother gave her a Khalil Gibran journal to help her cope with her grandmother suicide. Since then, she has been using writing as a way of healing and transformation and inspiring others to do the same.

She is the mother of 3 adult children and grandmother to two. She lives in Southern California.<

She blogs for Psychology Today, PsychAlive, and Boomer Cafe.

Find the author on the following sites…
Website   Blog   Facebook   Twitter   Pinterest   Goodreads   Amazon 

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