Former Abuse Sufferer Speaks Out On The Importance Of Being Open About Mental Health – SUICIDE PREVENTION MONTH

Rob Murray was in an abusive relationship and felt reluctant to talk to anyone about his problems because of the fear of looking weak.

The Preston man explains how his fear held him back from being open about his problems:

“So my struggles really started around 2017. I’d just come out of an abusive relationship and even though I’d told a friend about it on a night out, I still found my self been scared of looking weak. When I went to the police, this added more pressure on me as I was made to feel like it was all my fault!”

This perpetuated his problems and led him to alcohol, thankfully, this was a wake up call for the young man and he seeked help:

“It eventually reached a point on a night out when I’d drank myself stupid because I wanted the pain to stop that I eventually tried to commit suicide but thankfully cause I was that drunk I passed out and upon waking up and getting flashbacks I realised it was either talk or probably end up dead.

“I thought ‘well I don’t really have much to lose!’ So I spoke to 111 who then referred me to the hospital and I got some help from them with counselling. Although I’d spoken to professionals I still feared actually talking to others.”

The turning point came for Rob when we watching TV, seeing successful men who were speaking openly about their struggles with mental health helped him progress and open up about his experiences:

“It was only when I watched the TV show ‘SAS Who Dares Wins’ and see some of the people on that, most notably Ollie Ollerton and Michael Maisey and how I could relate to part of there struggles with mental health and alcoholism and the success they went on to achieve this helps me start to have conversations. I started with one person, then two, then five and now I have no fear of sharing my struggles or fears with anyone.”

Rob got the chance to meet Ollie Ollerton from ‘SAS Who Dares Wins’

Rob explains how being open about his problems helped him move past them, he shares an important message about speaking out:

“When I gradually worked my way to the above point in my life it felt like so much pain and suffering literally disappeared in an instant! Like I was free and finally able to be me and not have to wear the so-called ‘mask’ all the time. I think as males there’s this assumption that we always have to be macho, strong, independent guys but that’s really not the case.

“Being vulnerable and exposing myself has taught me so much more strength than I thought possible. Speaking out has really helped me share my message with people and it also helped me find peace in my life. Just because you don’t have thousands of followers or aren’t the popular one of the group this shouldn’t stop you from speaking out if your struggling.”

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