This is something I've been contemplating for a long time. For a while, I've kept an anonymous blog where I talk about living with bipolar disorder. It's not very popular but still gets a decent number of hits and I managed to get in contact with a girl in the Middle East (also a Nerdfighter), age 14, who was struggling with an abusive family and her own mental health. Despite being across the world, I was able to coach her through a difficult time in her life to the point where she eventually got diagnosed with several things and on medication that would help her.
The blog mostly consists of me talking about mental health topics--my own struggles with how I feel, how I go through life and how my life is different than others in light of it. Being diagnosed with bipolar II, generalized anxiety disorder, and agoraphobia gives me a very odd outlook in life, mindset, and lifestyle. The fact that my words have already helped at least one person is something that really makes me happy and I have, thankfully, gotten no negative comments on my blog. I think there are less trolls on a blog blatantly about mental health than there are on Youtube videos.
For a while I've been wanting to do a video blog, but I have a lot of hesitations. My blog was anonymous--it has no names, no faces, no email address that connects to my personal life. Being anonymous disconnected me from potential hate that might actually occur and kept me feeling alright with things. Youtube can be a wonderful but also a terrible place and this topic is not an easy one nor is it something many people understand. Those with mental disorders are seen as crazy by those who know little about it and I will admit that I take things personally sometimes. I wouldn't want a video blog to be a grounds for breeding hate, mostly because I want people to understand what I go through and what others with mental disorders go through. I'm passionate about it because I want people to understand ME and how what I have shapes and changes me but doesn't define me. Symptoms are not personality traits. Not to mention I am somewhat overweight and curvy, don't often wear makeup, and only rate somewhere along the lines of 'okay' on the scale of 'ugly to hot'. Criticism is bound to happen, especially if more than two or three people watch my videos.
I have no video editing skills, nothing fancy but a webcam, a mic, and the urge to let people know what life is like and answer questions about it. So my real question is...
Is it worth it? Is this something anyone would find interesting or helpful?
Hi! I don't suffer from bipolar, but I do suffer from depression and anxiety and actually on a couple occasions when I've been feeling at my worst I have gone onto YouTube and watched videos from people that have been experiencing the same thing and it's really helped me just to see this other person and not feel so alone. I feel this isn't something isolated to me or my diagnosis. So I guess in other words, I feel that what you are proposing would definitely be something worthwhile and helpful! : )
I also wouldn't worry about the editing skills and such (you'd probably pick them up as you go anyway?). I know I never really paid attention to that sort of thing, for me it was just helpful to see and hear another person talking about their experiences and thoughts and being able to relate. So as long as your mic works fine I don't think anyone would find fault. ^^
I can 100% understand your hesitation, but i feel there is a lot to gain!
Thanks Charlie! I really, really appreciate the input. :)
I think you should go for it, but I understand your hesitations. Like Charlie said, I think the editing skills will come as you work on it.
Thanks for the reply! I'm glad to hear a few people sound interested.
I don't have bipolar, but there's lots of suck in my brain and I vlogged on and off. I just used my laptop and later phone (funny enough had a better quality). Look a few videos and see what you like in that. Write out on a board or paper what you want to talk about and in what order (because you WILL forget) and further..Enjoy it!
Just remember that giant squids of anger can come to your channel, but also remember that it's not you they're angry about or something =)
I think that talking about mental illnesses can help others with these issues, but also show outsiders that we're not just batshit crazy and that it can be generally hard to do simple things.
And if you need any help, just message! (I might pick up vlogging again soon too!)
If even just one person watched this, it would make it worthwhile! ill endorse it on my feeds and channel if you go about it :)
Been a while, but I just thought if people wanted to know, I started this. The first video's here:
Hi Courtney =)
I am new here and was looking through the different forums etc and came across yours ... I then checked your youtube clip and I wanted to commend you on your bravery, intelligence and passion.
This is a generalisation but my experience is that people always fear what they don't know and respond with a plethora of negative emotions, motivated perhaps by an underlying desire to 'protect' themselves. Fight or flight to some degree.
The less people know, the more afraid they are.
The media have latched on to the fact that we need to feel that 'normal' people don't just go and do horrible stuff, if that were the case ... who can you trust? So they demonise 'mental illness' and have done for centuries to breed a culture of fear, an ability to influence and thus control the masses.
It seems we need a 'monster under the bed' and now days we have many different monsters to contend with and fear: mental illness (anyone who is not the same as everyone else), terrorists (anyone from another country), religious people (anyone who believes in something different from you), gender (what can I say, no one is safe).
What you are doing by informing people, explaining mental illness, just by your very presence proving that the millions of people who live with mental illness don't go around all batsh*t crazy is wonderful.
Keep at it.
ps - vid looks good so don't worry about editing skills! =)