Natalie’s Story – living with mental ill health
"I loved my job. I’m proud to say I think I was really good at it, but things started to take a tumble for the worse"
“I was a nurse for years and I started becoming unwell when I was about 25. I loved my job. I’m proud to say I think I was really good at it, but things started to take a tumble for the worse. I started to feel suicidal then I ended up in the Royal Edinburgh Hospital.
That was around 2015 then basically I ended up back in hospital again from April 2016 to April 2017. I was diagnosed with depression and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).
I feel like there’s a stigma around it. To be told your personality is flawed…your personality is the very essence of who you are. For someone to say that’s what’s wrong with you is difficult.
I’ve been in and out of hospital since 2017. My emotions can be really intense and sometimes I don’t understand them. I can think illogically. It’s like having a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other. You’ve got the logical side and the illogical side and sometimes one wins out and the other doesn’t.
I’m trying to get back into work so I can rebuild my life. I’m going to confidence building classes, I’m involved with therapy, I’m trying to make friends and reconnect with people I’ve lost touch with.
Mental illness can hit anybody. You can have symptoms way before it’s diagnosed, and you can actually be quite successful and have mental illness.
I did training last week with health professionals to educate them on what it’s like to live with BPD. I got some really amazing comments about how my insight was really powerful. I want to do the best I can to educate people about what it’s really like.
I want to give people hope as well, cos people think BPD is untreatable. There’s no immediate cure but that doesn’t mean people can’t get better.”
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