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Author Archives: Frances Coleman-Williams

How do I tell a new partner I’ve got a history of mental illness?

Mental illness affects every part of a person’s life; it can be tricky to decide you’re ready for dating and it can be even harder to know when and how to tell a potential partner that you have a mental illness. Whether you consider yourself fully recovered, recovering or if you remain ill, it’s up to you the language you use but I would say it’s important you’re comfortable with yourself and your history before you consider inviting someone else to share your life. Even if you feel your illness is completely behind you, if you have a susceptibility, it may come back, and both you and your partner need to consider the impact it may have on both of you – this subject doesn’t need to be doom and gloom, it’s just another thing to consider alongside others such as children, money and living arrangements.

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How do I support a partner with a mental illness?

1 in 4 people will experience mental illness each year and it is thought this number is rising. Someone recovery or with a history of mental illness needs to think carefully about when the right time is to start looking for a partner and dating. I had been ill for a long time and I had been working hard on recovery when I thought I’d got to the point, I was not quite fully recovered but my illness did not define me anymore. I was happy being single but I wanted to investigate the world of dating to see if “the one” was out there for me.

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6 conundrums of online dating with a mental health diagnosis

Online dating is now the second most common way to meet people (after meeting through friends) and it accounts for over 20% current committed relationships and this number is growing. As an introverted, bottom of the career ladder, divorcee, the advert practically wrote itself! In a world where “women’s desirability peaks at 21” once I was ready to be thinking about dating again, I was considered over the hill! I’d been in the mental health world for many years, out of work and my self esteem was pretty low. My last relationship had ended with my mental health playing a large role. I’d been hurt when most in pain and it was hard to consider trusting anyone again. I was ambivalent about wanting someone else in my life.

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