Sudden doubt and feelings of failure can happen at any time but for Terry they came in an unexpected wave which culminated in a breakdown and suicidal thoughts.

For 18 months, he didn’t want to see anybody or interact with others. The house was dark and the curtains remained closed. He actively researched ways to end his life and finally found the courage to seek help through his local GP. Over following months he had daily crisis support. He was encouraged to walk with a support worker but nothing seemed to give him joy and he always retreated back to his bed.

What helps?

The changing point for Terry was when he found the Moving Forward group. For the first time, he understood that he wasn’t alone and found an environment where he could open up and talk within a group of men who could understand.  Through this service he was led to VITAL Befriending, which fundamentally helps reduce the isolation felt by so many struggling with depression and anxiety. Talking is a fantastic outlet for those with mental ill health and the benefits were captured in a letter to Terry’s befriender.

What helped Terry is being with like-minded individuals who can understand. As a user run organisation, VITAL staff understand, have empathy