What made you start sharing your mental health experiences online?

After the birth of my first son I had a difficult time processing his birth which lead to a PTSD diagnosis. I joined Instagram on a whim. I connected with those bravely sharing their battles which encourage me to start a blog and then candidly share my mental health experiences. 

What have been the pros for you?

Knowing I am not alone, knowing I am helping others. Knowing that I am normalizing talking openly about mental health. Finding a support network.

What have been the cons for you?

At times social media can be a drain. It can lead to an inferiority complex when I am at my most vulnerbale , comparing myself to those glossy flat lay squares without taking into account the real life behind the squares. It has also been daunting for those in my life to read and what they may think of me.

Did your sharing online lead you to making any real life changes?

Yes. Joining Instagram I connected with other NICU/CHD parents and began to feel “normal”. I also began to learn the signs to look out for, to not to be ashamed of my mental health issues or the fact I was on/needed medication. I knew when to get help when before I didn’t and it festered. I became better educated and equipped because of others sharing their experiences.

Did it lead you to making any decisions about accessing professional or medical help?

Yes. I am now in therapy –  something I wouldn’t have approached beforehand. I saw others talking of the benefit of therapy which promoted me to start it too. 

Find Vicky Cockerill on Instagram