The Sun Newspaper,An Open Letter

Dear -Fill in the blank,

One of your journalists approached me a few months back when I was on a 2 day break with my kids and cousins,via email with the subject of “Will you talk to me”. Now, I’m sure I can be forgiven for thinking that this was junk mail and to be honest, I should have deleted it and sent it to the trash where it quite rightly belonged but I didn’t. Instead, I engaged in a lengthly conversation about my experience with Post natal depression – and against my better judgement (as I had a feeling and a “niggle”) telling me not continue or share ,but oh boy, I sure did. See,that’s what some journalists feed on .. a person’s vulnerability and/or the need to want to help people and break down stigma , that they are willing to let you in to their thoughts and feelings, to tell the story of how they nearly god damn died because of what was going on.

I have been blogging and talking about my journey for many years and until recently, I didn’t have it in me for fear of judgement, to talk about and admit to the termination that I had. Due to shame and regret? Possibly and most probably but I was told that it would help other women. You got me hook,line and sinker. Silly ,me I guess.  Now, it is true that I had told this story to an amazing woman in a previous publication(so as your title suggested, it wasn’t an exclusive) a few weeks prior to but the Sun is much closer to home and I know that the chance of people I know reading it was more likely than the other.

When I received an email to tell me that it had been published, I was away at a residential bootcamp and had no coverage apart from wifi at certain times of the day.  Imagine my shock when I opened this.

My stomach sank and I was nearly sick. I have never ever been made to feel the way I felt on day of publication.  I couldn’t read the whole thing due to tears streaming down my face and the bile rising in my throat from my stomach. Over dramatic enough for you? Well unfortunately its all true which is more than I can say for your headline which I was told wasn’t written by the journalist who spoke to me- despite only her name being on the article.

I want to ask one thing… The headline talks about how I “aborted my healthy baby”. How do you know that this baby was healthy or not? How do you think that impacts a mother on the brink of suicide, making such a difficult decision , who thinks that she’s murdering her baby? Because i’ll tell you this, I was at that stage in my life and I fought so fucking hard to get through it all and I did. It was my husband, my daughter, my cousin,uncle and close friends who helped. Your paper hides behind the guise of wanting to help and share these stories but it is YOUR paper that adds to the stigma when you print headlines like that and take advantage of people like me.  You did real good though.. I like to think that I’m intelligent,worldly and educated pretty well….Maybe not.

When I tried contacting the journalist, she wasn’t in the office but her boss was. he didn’t reply until I sent two other emails and her dismissive attitude was a  further kick in the stomach.  I responded to her mail but I haven’t had a reply back so I am reponding to a few points via this open letter  Number 1. Apparently, “Sometimes seeing your story in print can be painful”- ahh , yes especially when it’s sensationalised. which leaves me to point 2.  questioning ethics…”Headlines are meant to grab attention” at the risk of someones mental health? Really, you want to go there? 3.The Scottish Sun has tackled many sensitive subjects without complaint – lies. Ask blogger @TheRealSupermum and the doozy which was done on her.

I vowed after this “story” was published( which some of it appears to have been taken from a certain other publication, tut tut)that I would never share anything again but I looked back at some of the old emails,texts and comments on my blog of support, and thought about why I started writing and share my story in the first palce. The conclusion that I came to was my need to let women (and men) who make difficult decisions every day or go through PND,Prenatal depression or depression as a whole, that they aren’t alone,there is support and no one needs to feel shame. You won’t destroy that because I won’t let you.  Your “rag” of a newspaper is thought less of than I am. The only one who should feel shame, is you.


Angeline Brunel Dickson


I don’t know what you want to call it.. stupidity? A moment of madness? Whatever it is, I wish I hadn’t done it.What am I talking about? I stopped taking my anti depressants because I thought that I was doing “ok”. I thought that I finally sorted things out with the healthy eating, exercise and all that sort of thing. However, I didn’t and recently I have paid the price but worst of all, so have my kids and husband. Don’t get me wrong when I was exercising, I felt on top of the world but due to holidays and schedule clashes, I haven’t done much in the past 2 weeks.

It wasn’t until last night, reading a post by the amazingly strong and in my eyes, courageous woman , Vicky AKA @SingleMAhoy and her post which she had written a long time ago but only decided to post it, which can be read here where she talks about often forgetting to take her pills and then thinking that you’re ok and really, it’s a downward spiral from there.. I usually follow that pattern. I also can empathise with the everything annoys you , little things . Again, it’s from someone whistling, chewing loudly (or so I think), Thunderpants doing handstands and saying that she will disturb the family down stairs when really its the noise which irritates the fuck out of me. In fact, everything irritates me. So much so that I am wanting to claw at my face to make things stop. I break out in sweat, I itch and I just can’t concentrate on much at all.  I cry, I shout, I throw things and I just can’t understand why I can’t be “norma;”. But what is normal? Really, can someone please tell me?

What is it like to find enjoyment again in simple things, to not feel so exhausted all the time because of the stress? Let me tell you… I have done Tough Mudder recently and that never even touched on the exhaustion that I feel on a daily basis due to the anxiety. Ok, so we went through a period where the boy wasn’t sleeping and it is hell and it is hard but it’s not where all of the tiredness is coming from. I wonder if I will be able to feel content again.

I have started back on the tablets again as of today and I really hope that they stop my mind from realing and I stop feeling like there is a ping-pong ball in my head , dotting from one side of my head to the other.. or is it more like a game of squash that’s going on?  I just want it to slow down, to stop and for me to be calm. I don’t remember the last time I felt calm. We went on holiday recently and there was an incident which happened and although we were all on edge, it increased my anxiety even more. I thought I could ride it out and that once I returned home that I could really just decide what to do.

You see, I am not depressed. At least I don’t feel that way , but it could lead to that if I don’t buck up my ideas and sort this out. I am very self-aware and I just needed a kick up the arse to get things in motion. I think that post was meant to be sent out last night because despite the tears that it brought, you can bet your ass, some were tears of utter relief.I just couldn’t believe that some of the things described were so similar.

So here I am, the doctor wants to see me again in two weeks.. I’m not sure that the ones he has put me on are really right but I’ll give them a try. I guess part of this whole thing for me is that I have a personal issue with being on antidepressants. I would never treat anyone the way that I treat myself so I can’t understand why I add a personal stigma. I need to get on with it and just accept that I need them. However, as someone who studied counselling, I think fixing things with a tablet rather than working through it, isn’t the answer. My other part of me thinks, well if it helps is it really doing any harm? This is the inner conflict that I have and it drives me crazy.

I don’t know what the answer is, if there is one in the first place but I know that I am pro active and for now, the pills are what I need.

The Rollercoaster of life

Today, I want to run away. I don’t want to be a wife, a mother of two beautiful children, an employee , a friend or a family member. Today I want to be alone with no worries , thoughts, anxiety, or stress. I want to have a clear mind and be “still” like the water on a lake on a quiet summer morning. Is this too much to ask? When did life become so complicated?

I know that I can control my own destiny but when there are so many people to throw into the loop, who are affected either directly or indirectly, throwing caution to the wind is damn near impossible. Hurting others is not what I am about and I don’t want to start… yet there will have to be some decisions made and fast because I cant go on feeling like a pressure cooker who is about to blow at any minute.

I’ve had the conversation in my head about what to do, pretended that I am giving advice to a “friend”, but in reality its not very practical! You see, I have never been one who can make decisions well especially when it affects the lives of others. I would rather bury my head in the sand and be a coward. I put on a hard exterior but I’m very much “soft” on the inside. I hate upsetting and hurting people and I have a lovely list of defense mechanisms that I use.

I seem to get by on the reactions of others… It can dictate the kind of day that I’m having if going through a particular low point. This isn’t a daily thing thankfully but it happens and it makes me feel weak and upset that I can’t have my own mind.

When does it all kick in, the life experiences and the coming to peace and acceptance of yourself? When do you learn to love yourself or settle for who you are? Is it something that comes with age and time? Or does it just not happen for some folk and not others?

If that’s the case, it seems like a pretty big waste of life, no? I sure as hell don’t want to go through life feeling as though I’m a bad person. In theory I know I’m not but I still haven’t accepted myself , still unsure of who I am or who I want to be.

I feel like a chameleon some times.. I used to do a lot of copying of friends when I was much younger. It was admiration of those few choice friends for me and annoyance for others. I lost a few friends and although there was no ulterior or sinister motive in it, I can see how it was detrimental to those friendships. I just didn’t know who I was but I saw happiness in their lives that I wanted for myself.

Luckily, I’m less about copying but I still do change opinions to suit those who I admire in hope that I’ll be accepted. I don’t do it with everyone… I am lucky that I have a few folk around me that know me completely. The problem is that I still continue doing this… It achieves nothing.

Wow, this post has turned into a major self loathing exercise! You know what they say though… “better out than in” and I did start this blog as a way to get out how I feel about things. I’m a thinker, a very deep thinker and sometimes it can be dangerous… Or sometimes it can be good.

Anyway. No idea how to end this post so I just will.




I am not where I want to be… I don’t know where to be and I don’t know my way there.. The past few weeks despite being accepted to write for Hello! magazine on line, opportunities presenting themselves from my original blog(this one), starting to get back in to exercise and losing weight again.. something is niggling me and causing me to have major anxiety that seems endless. I am not sleeping due to Bubblebutt teething and around 04:00am, I am waking.

I am constantly busy, my mind is on overdrive and I have the attention span of a fish.. these all point to one thing.. depression. No, not PND but general depression and something has got to give but I really don’t know what that is. I have all the things I could ever want, may even be able to do the holistic course that I had to put off last year but it isn’t enough. I feel like I am searching on line , people’s blogs, friends lives for whatever it is that will bring me happiness.. What is that happiness though? Am I doing too much, putting too much pressure on myself, should I stop with social media, the blog? Slow down?

I fear that if I do that, I won’t “BE” something.. why do I just not accept me for who I am? No one expects me to be anything other than who I am right now.. No one but ME.I know that if I don’t sort things out that it will be too late… life is already going by so quickly and I need to enjoy the here and now.. But I’m not… I took a bit of a break from blogging but I felt the pressure to return in case I lost followers etc.. Anyway, that’s where its at for me just now..

Anxiety, it’s high

See when you have or are prone to anxiety and you forget to renew your prescription and all of a sudden your behaviour changes. That.

I honestly forgot to take them, exercise and life was and still is apart from a few glitches,good but then it just crashes and every little thing/noise bothers and irritates the fuck out of you because your senses are heightened? That.

When you start sweating profusely, your back and all other muscles tighten in your body causing constant muscle ache and physical and mental exhaustion. That.

When you take far too much on in life, and can’t say no to anything or anyone for fear of letting them down.That.

When you go to see your doctor about how you are feeling, ask for blood tests and are told to make an appointment with the nurse, only to finally do that, arrange childcare and when you show up, are then told by the nurse”I don’t see a request on your notes, I can’t take blood unless GP gives consent and well, she wouldn’t forget cause she is a GP”. You ask the nurse to ask the doctor who says that they didn’t feel it was necessary for them to be taken and deny all knowledge of the conversation. That.

You don’t want to make a complaint for fear of having “anxious/mental health etc” in your notes as you’ve viewed them once before after speaking to a doc and not agreeing with him on one occasion only to see the shitty comments that they have made. That.

When you’re visibly upset and your prescription isn’t ready, and the receptionist is looking at you like you’re bat shit crazy, and you’d really like to go all nuts in her face an ask why she feels it necessary to pass judgement on you… That.

When you want to just get on in life without medication (it’s the lowest dose) but still feel part of the stigma, and believe me there is a stigma cause i work in the NHS and have witnessed it by so calked professionals.That.

BUT, despite feeling like this, you know you have fight in you and are proactive, have friends around you, as well as in the virtual world … You know that you’ll come out just fine 🙂 .

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