Tuesday, 19 January 2016

From fighting Stigma and HGVs to visiting LBC

How can a week go by so quickly? Last week I was in agony with a possible kidney infection whilst in drag protesting - which got a fair share of press attention too! 
Picture thanks to Slough Express - I'm the one in red dress
I am pleased to report that said kidney appears to be behaving like a pulled muscle at the moment so I could have a painless pantomime next week. Ha! It is good fun being a local celeb although no autograph hunters yet!

This week, I published Episode 2 of #ExploreMH. For those of you new to my story, there is a full recap on the INFO page of my website but rather than sit at home and be abandoned to rot and fester, I am going out of my way to make the most positives I can out of the situation. #ExploreMH is a series of Huffington Post articles with YouTube videos tied in.

People are scared to ask for help because of the 'image' mental health has and therefore how other people will treat you. Its very easy to say "I don't care what other people think of me" but stigma is more than that. My aim is to make mental health more accessible and easier to understand and in turn break down some of the stigma that goes with it. Even though it is illegal to treat people differently because of their mental health, it happens far more than it should.

If you would like to read more on stigma in mental health ( #ExploreMH ) then please check out the article I've written on The Huffington Post or you can watch the article on YouTube. However you choose to do it, please do share it and leave a comment - spark a debate. In the next edition I'll go onto talk about how you, Mr Average Joe or Ms Average Jo, can help battle stigma. I plan for that episode to come out on 2nd February which will be hard with pantomime surround it! I'm sure there is another major event at the same time... I wonder if it coincides...

Also this week I popped into Central London to sit in on Shelagh Fogarty's show on LBC. Towards the end of the 2015 her producer Rachel found my website and invited me on as a guest to talk about male suicide reaching a crisis point and my own experiences - you can read more in the archive on top left.  Continues below video...



My anxiety did make me panic. Not a full panic attack but it rattled the gates nonetheless. I pushed it down, donned my #TimeToTalk #Take5toTalk shirt and drove to Hillingdon Underground Station; to find the car park full. Anxiety laughed at me. After a few laps of the car park and pondering if I could park outside a bay without blocking anyone, I drove to the next station. I've never been to Ickenham station but I have to make myself do things. I found a space pretty quick and parking was cheaper there - result!
Stock image of Shelagh in the
TV Studio style room at LBC
I forgot to take any selfies!

LBC is a talk radio station broadcasting from some amazing studios at their parent company's HQ in Leicester Square. It's also home to Global's other radio offerings such as Classic FM, Smooth and Capital which along with LBC have gone from being regional stations to nationwide hits. Being sat in the control room with Rachel and her team was amazing. Seeing how callers were lined up, a guide script ever changing and updating. At key points Shelagh was listening to a guest or a caller and her producer as they agreed in which direction to take the show. On the journey home, Shelagh tweeted me to say 'It's Exhausting!' and it truly is; yet I was watching. I love listening to LBC and, not just because she let me watch, Shelagh is my favourite. Some presenters can be quite confrontational whereas Shelagh lets the caller take and then through gentle yet suggestive questioning can either help us understand or let the person's argument fall apart like a neatly demolished stack. Perhaps it is a symptom of my anxiety but I hate confrontation and the 'Paxman' style is all about that.

I've already offered the team a bribe of Jaffa Cakes to have me back for #TimeToChange Day!

As always - thank you for reading and sharing my blog, articles and videos. Please do comment -even if it just to say howdey - and give the Thumbs Up or Heart or whatever it is. Right... Better go learn my lines for panto! THANK YOU xxx
Matt Streuli is a mental health blogger and activist. He is a member of MIND, the UK Mental Health Charity and a Time To Change Champion. Read more on his story on his blog and his articles on THE HUFFINGTON POST.
Blog: www.MattStreuli.uk 
Twitter : @mattstreuli
IG: www.instagram.com/p/_hk9w9AiBS/
Tumblr : mattstreuli.tumblr.com/


http://mattstreuli.tumblr.com/post/137478398205/mattstreuli-see-me-in-panto-im-the-dame



A photo posted by Matthew E Streuli (@matthewstreuli) on