I was encouraged to come to Llanelli Mind by a friend. She could see that I wasn’t really going out very much so she suggested that I join some of their trips. My husband is physically very unwell so I spent a lot of my time in the house with him, just going out when I had to or when things needed doing.
To begin with, I was very nervous, but I felt I needed something outside of my home life so I started coming on the trips and found I thoroughly enjoyed it. Then they started up a card making class so I started coming for that; just once a week at first, but then it grew from that. I joined the hearing voices group and this was a really big one for me. Most of my family knew I had mental health problems, but
none of them knew that I actually heard voices.
Not my husband, my children, nobody knew. I didn’t have the confidence to share it. Going to the group for a while gave me the confidence to be a bit more open. I was so afraid, thinking that there was something wrong with me, so meeting other people who were the same was really helpful. It made me realise that I’m not that different. It’s a big deal for me. A big breakthrough for myself to be able to share it, and to not be afraid of being judged.
If I hadn’t come to Llanelli Mind, I would be becoming quite unwell without realising how bad it was. I think it just would’ve got worse, especially if I hadn’t had the one-to-one support because, again, that’s a really big thing. There are times when you need someone to just talk to, and often you need someone outside your family. Well, everyone needs somebody, don’t they?
And everybody at Llanelli Mind is very, very friendly. I didn’t say a lot to begin with, but everybody was friendly anyway. You start to feel more at ease then, because you’ve got that welcome as soon as you come through the door and it really means a lot.
It’s given me a lot more confidence.
I am able to take part in fundraising collections and outreach events as well, where you’re not just collecting, but you’re giving out leaflets and speaking to other people about Mind. At one time, there’s no way I would have done that.
For anyone looking for help, I would say to just come along, even if it’s only for a short time. You don’t have to be here all day; there’s nothing that says you’ve got to be here for so many hours. You can just come for a short time. Just have a cup of tea maybe, that sort of thing. Just come in and make friends.
Llanelli Mind, by Twinks
A place to go in times of need
A place to learn
A place to make friends
A place to go forward in my life
A place to be encouraged
A place to give me confidence
A place where I am accepted
A place where I belong