I love the internet when you stumble across little gems amidst a wave of darkness. I’ve written previously on other blogs about the power of the internet (it’s use as a public sphere / platform for people to speak) but also because of it’s power to provide individuals with ways to communicate creatively. Sometimes I do find myself scrolling through Pinterest or just general blogs and I have to remind myself that there’s a whole big bad world out there, full of wonder. But I’m not worried of spending too much time online, blah blah blah – I like trees and things so it’s all good, but my point here is that the internet can be a source of strength. The internet allows us to facilitate things such as ‘support groups’, and blogs (I’ve mentioned The Mental Blocks before – one of my favourite online blogs/site).
There’s so many people who are using the internet as a means for social change. In particular, there are a lot of inspiring, wonderful people using social media, and blogging platforms to try and break down Mental Health discrimination and stigma – and that, in my opinion is absolutely amazing. I couldn’t possibly list them all, and I’m constantly being sent new links and blog recommendations, and that makes me feel so proud! (I don’t know if proud is the right word to use here, but I am fully aware of how scary it can be to share stories and openly discuss mental health, and it’s inspiring that there are so many people joining in the discussion!)
Over on Facebook there’s plenty of examples of support-group type things*, and spaces where people with shared experiences come together. There’s one lovely, ace space created by the wonderful Molly Pearce (creator of the Doodle Chronicles – and now author!!) where individuals talk, share and support each other. I’m not gunna talk about topics etc. but I wanted to just mention that the internet really is a place where you can discover inspiring, motivating things, that can help keep you plodding along.
Take for instance the lovely image posted at the start of this blog post. This image was drawn and shared by Sophia; I stumbled across it yesterday when I really was feeling pretty rubbish, and it instantly cheered me up! I know cheering me up/helping me wasn’t the intention behind Sophia’s work, but it’s just lovely (and so cool) that she is able to share her work and inspire others.
Ten points to everyone.
*Peer support groups aren’t therapeutic and they do not offer professional support, they are simply individuals coming together through social media, sharing their experiences and supporting each other. It really is quite lovely.