Programs like this make me feel like Im not alone

Last night I watched a program on channel 4 od online called on the edge and online (http://www.channel4.com/programmes/on-the-edge-and-online/on-demand/59258-001) and it talks about people who have mental illnesses like anxiety (which I suffer a lot from) and others that I cant remember and for some reason it gives me comfort knowing that Im not alone with this and then I feel ashamed about watching other people suffer to make me feel good about myself and for reminding me that my world isn't as bad as what it should be due to my injury.

Am I alone with this or do other people to it to, I was also jealous of how they helped each other as Im no good at helping other people as it gets me frustrated and feel really selfish.

9 Replies

Hi Bexx

Yes I think we all are guilty of not wanting to feel alone and lets be honest if we were not interested in how other people cope and adapt then this forum would not exist.

It is also a reminder thats others may be worse than you.

Oh and about you not helping others. Well I would like to thank you for pointing out this programme to me . I would have missed it had you not posted this so thanks again.


I only spotted it while I was flicking through catch up on my boyfriends sky box, I couldn't download it with out his pin so I sourced it out on the website, it looks like a series when I thought it was a one off documentary.


Hi Bexx,

Frustratingly I only managed to catch the tail end of this programme . From what I saw the support for each other was excellent.

Thanks so much for providing the link so I can watch it all : )

I am a natural 'helper' of others but do find that my physical/cognitive limitations can get in the way of how much I would like to do.However, help comes in many forms and even the smallest thing can often make a big difference to someone.

I am so very lucky that I have returned to my usual relaxed, upbeat self after illness but I am keen to understand and educate myself in the plight of others.

I am glad you can take some comfort in sharing their experiences.I don't think they considered themselves to be viewed as suffering without reason.I imagine the purpose of the programme was to raise awareness of mental health in it's many forms and offer insight and strategies for fellow sufferers and carers - what a brave and noble thing to do : )

It is natural to feel relieved that I don't have to cope with worse challenges but I have the greatest respect for those that do.

As previously said, help comes in many forms and by putting up your post and link you have just raised awareness of this issue and helped many others : )

Thankyou so much, Bexx

Angela x


Hi Bexx,

I think I've said the same in the past, not sure if it was here or to neuropsych, that I feel guilty by getting comfort from others misfortune or problems but that's what makes us human and stops use feeling lonely in our problems.

As Paxo has already said, it's the reason this forum exists because, no matter how hard they try, those without our problems can in no way understand what we are going through and result sometimes in coming up with clichéd platitudes that at time offends or hits your self worth, you musn't let it get you down, think positive, push through it, they do wonderful things these days, new treatments evry day etc. etc. etc..

Yes positive thinking does help and yes pushing through does help but not all the time and often with repercussions. I recently 'pushed through it' during a holiday with my wife, a three and half mile hike down and up through a gorge, beautiful and made me forget for a while and even felt like the 'me' I used to be, then the next two days didn't exist from fatigue and a couple of seizures. Balance in all things.

This forum and programmes such as the one you;ve watch try to show the fit and healthy what it may be like for us but only 'we' can truly empathise with the subject properly because we live it daily.

Sorry for the ramble but just trying to re-enforce the strength and power of this forum for support, empathy and at times god forbid humour and sharing of talent.

You've struck a chord and I wish you well



Hi Bexx. I don't know how or why I missed this 'cause the subject is pretty close to my heart, but I'll catch up tonight on 4OD.

Anything which raises awareness of mental illness is good. It's always been another one of the hidden issues which is either too difficult to verbalise or too embarrassing to admit to.

So if channel 4 has covered the subject................ good on them ,once again, for tackling a subject which so many in society turn their backs on.

And if you felt a connection with it then the programme has reached at least one appreciative viewer. Never feel guilty Bexx for getting solace wherever you can ; mental illness is a lonely business.

Thanks for the link.

Take care of yourself, love Cat xx

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I had a friend who suffered really badly from psychosis and she was in and out of mental institutes on a monthly bases and she self harmed. She really freaked me out (especially with the psychosis kicked in as I never knew what mood she was in so it put me on edge and really anxious and when she was talking to something evil don't get me wrong I talk to a good voice in my head but she fully freaked me out).

Needless to say I decided to cut the cord with that friendship as she fully stressed me out (on top of dealing with work and doing course work) over not returning some items I have lent her and we would agree a time for me to collect them and then something would always happen which meant I couldn't collect my stuff then out of no where texted me say you can come and collect your stuff which I ignored as I could be bother to have a conversation with her, she last got hold of me around Christmas to meet up and I told her I was busy with work and my course work and intentionally forgot (but I was really busy finish off my certificate) and haven't heard anything since (thankfully) but the whole experience of being friends with her has damaged my confidence with trying to make new friends as I am really cautious when meeting new people and this has made me socially anxious but I am forcing myself to be in social situations (zumba, HIYA (ran by my local headway) starting my own knitting/crocheting group, meeting people who I can make things for, seeing a friend once week, meeting up with penpals) even if I just listen which is frustrating as Im too nervous to join in.

Im hoping I have found someone who is seeking friends as badly as me (I don't want that to come across as though Im putting her down because im not), its been frustratingly slow to develop the friendship but unlike people from HIYA (which again I have tried to bond with but they freaked me out (again not trying to be mean) because they aren't as far through their injury as me) its gradually working (she knows how much I love knitting and crocheting and she brought me a book on how to crochet food and she invited me to another friend who goes to zumba 40th birthday party on Sunday, (due to the rain I had a small collision with a wall in my car and smashed the headlight, she felt really guilty because if she hadnt invited me I wouldnt have had a reason to drive in the rain and I told her not to be as my driving logic of don't drive down a steep hill in a 20 year old car because you will aquaplane (driving on water) didn't kick in but she has asked me how my car is) this crash did put in my shock but Im okay (I just keeping having flash backs and paranoia if I damaged the small garden wall how much do I have to pay in repairs Im too scared to go back) and I pulled in to a leisure centre as I was getting super stressed as I didn't know where they were so she came with a friend and met me at the leisure centre after a hug to calm me down she told me to follow her friend which I did and I followed her and her partner to get back home so I have to try and not go clingy with her and try and keep her as we have slowly been bonding for a year as I see her 3 times a week in zumba. I also made a few other friends in zumba which isn't as far advanced as the friend who I was talking about. << I feel like that story should in a separate post :-\ .. ??

I have other things going on as well like my uncle turning up after a 9 year absence which has gotten me anxious as he is living with me and my mum in our tiny flat and it feels stupid to be anxious over it as I cant figure out why, still trying to lose a stone, the college are still messing our apprenticeship around which is making me less motivated to do it, I have a few more roles due to the increase in pay which is nice to keep me busy and as well as knitting I have taking up colouring for adults << another separate post ... ???

sorry for the ranting essay (feels nice to get it off my chest)


It's hard, I know, to walk away from friends who bring you down with their own problems. But, sometimes, we haven't the skills to help them and yet we try, which often results in doubling the problem.

You are still quite vulnerable and yet I can see that you've learned many social strategies during the past couple of years to address you isolation problems. But I think you're wise to avoid challenging relationships, despite the instinct to be supportive.

You've worked hard to involve yourself with rewarding activities and finding new friends ; I'm impressed with your comment about not getting too 'clingy' with this special one who's been so supportive ; friendships should develop naturally I agree.

I hope you can manage to convey your dislike of the domestic arrangements at home to your mum. I'm sure it's difficult to broach the subject with her........ perhaps she finds it difficult to say no to her brother.

Good luck with everything you're trying to achieve Bexx ; you really deserve it. Love from Cat xxx


thanks cat, im slowly getting use to the living arrangements and it feels nice that I can go out with a family member and have them not embarrass me in front of others like my mum does, my mum is the type of person that has to have all the attention of the conversation which is why I don't/didn't bring friends over as she would want to hold conversations with my friend when my friend is there to see me not her, my mum is very controlling of me (because of my accident and I don't think she has learnt to let go) it feels as if she has a policy of everything that is my daughters is automatically mine as well which I naturally don't like as they are my possessions brought with my money and she never asks for permission, she has only just learnt to knock on my bedroom door before barraging in unannounced.


I remember that there was an issue with your mum way-back and I'm sorry for the impact it has on your everyday life.

But maybe as you become more self confident and outgoing she'll start to let go little by little.. It's easy to underestimate the fear our loved ones still go through after we feel we're moving on form the BI.

It's good the domestic situation has turned out ok though Bexx. I hope you'll continue making such positive moves with your activities and your friendships.

Take care & lots of love, Cat xxx


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