Dear all…

A Guest Post by @BrynShenkin

new york

Dear all,

I’m a secondary school Science teacher. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder five years ago but have struggled with my mental health for the past decade. I never told anyone at work about my issues apart from the HR lady who noted down my medication etc. I hadn’t had an “episode” since my diagnosis.

However, about four weeks ago, we were just chatting in the Science office when mental health came up in conversation. I mentioned in passing that I have bipolar but no-one really batted an eyelid; they were talking about their own problems! I felt a huge sense of relief knowing that some of my friends at work finally knew the truth.

A week before the end of term I began to feel unwell. I hadn’t been sleeping well as I was worrying and excited about my wedding at the beginning of April. I was scared – I had the same racing, and slightly bizarre, thoughts as before. I rang my Dad before telling my fiancé. I missed the final week of term. Before that week I’d only had one sick day in two years; I hate being ill. But my focus was to be well for my wedding and honeymoon in New York – and both went very smoothly.

I returned to work at the start of this term. I chatted to my head of department about my illness and she wished she had known before. I now wish I had told her too. There is still such a stigma around mental health. If someone needs glasses or walks with a stick people are okay with that because they can actually see what the issue might be. However, the more we talk, the more other people will understand.


Human Biology graduate. Science teacher. AMRSB. Aspiring author. Tory town councillor.

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