phone 07881 511 200
Shopping cart
January 29, 2024

Time to Talk Day

Time to Talk Day.  What is it?  I had never heard of it until recently.  Turns out, it is held every year and is run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness and is in partnership with the Co-Op.  This year it is being observed on the 1st February in the UK.

Time to Talk Day aims to encourage everyone to be more open and talk about mental health.  The words ‘mental health’ still carry so much stigma.  A bit like the words domestic abuse, and I have been thinking how the two can be linked in a positive way.

Talking about mental health can sometimes feel awkward and uncomfortable.  Especially if we are the one’s that are experiencing mental health issues – and plenty of us are!  But it doesn’t have to feel awkward of uncomfortable.  A simple text or whatsapp to a friend or colleague we haven’t heard from in a while.  Simply saying “Hey, how are you?  It has been a while”.

Domestic Abuse and Mental Health go hand in hand.  If you are experiencing or ever have experienced domestic abuse, then you will have experienced poor mental health to some degree or another.  It goes without saying doesn’t it?  I would be extremely surprised to speak to even one person who had experienced domestic abuse in one of its forms, who said they hadn’t experienced some form of poor mental health.  In fact, I wouldn’t believe them!

In my Mum’s generation, they called it depression.  I once said to my mother I felt she had poor mental health and she bit my head of and accused me of saying she was mad!  Yet, the stigma continues!

No matter how hard we find it, we all have to concede, it is ‘good to talk’.  That old cliché!  But it is not just about talking.  It is about so much more than that.  It is about listening.  It is about believing what someone is talking to you about.  Talking, listening, believing are all things that can change a person’s life for the better.

What about disclosure?  It is the same thing, isn’t it?  Many people who have experienced domestic abuse fear disclosing it to another person because they are afraid of not being listened to, of not being believed.  They are told by their abuser; they will not be believed.  They are threatened by their abuser that if they TALK to someone they will be seen as mad.  They will lose the children.  They won’t be listened to or believed.  So how can we all start to break down the stigma around mental health and domestic abuse?

Shall we all try to talk to one person on the 1st February.  It can be about anything.  It doesn’t have to be about domestic abuse.  We can text or whatsapp that friend we haven’t heard from in a while.  We can just simply say “How are you?”  Hopefully, they will be thrilled to get a message from you and they will message you back or call you and say they are fine and ask you if you are ok.  But, if they message you or call you and say they need to talk, let’s talk to them.  Let’s make a promise to ourselves that we will try to help one person on the 1st February by talking.  And if that talking means there is a disclosure of domestic abuse, make sure you are armed with the information you need to be able to support and signpost that person to the help they need.

·       Talk

·       Listen

·       Believe

Three simple things we can all do to help others and ourselves.

Will you do it?



Leave a comment


  • I first met Sharon back in 2000 when I went into a refuge she worked in after fleeing a violent relationship. I had two babies and virtually just a bag of clothes and a few toys with us. She helped me with appointments with the police, solicitors and..

    A survivor of domestic abuse.
  • I was fortunate enough to meet and work with Sharon when she was the Advocacy Manager at Woman’s Trust and I was working for Westminster City Council. During this time Sharon developed and managed the Independent Domestic Violence Advocacy Service..

    Ainslie O’Connor – Principal Advisor for the Department of the Premier and Cabinet – Adelaide, Australia.
  • Thank you so much for all the support you have given me. You really have been amazing, and to be honest, I wouldn’t have been able to cope with Child Protection without you. The amount of strength you have given me is totally priceless, even with..

    A survivor of domestic abuse.
  • I knew Sharon as a work colleague over ten years ago. At the time, she was supporting vulnerable people, some of them were homeless due to domestic abuse and substance misuse. For me, assisting such people was what anyone in her role would be expect..

    Ted Chanza, Head of Market Operations, Airtel Malawi Ltd, Lilongwe, Malawi, Africa.
  • I have known Sharon for 6 years and have had the pleasure of working alongside her when I chaired the Westminster MARAC. Sharon is a committed, empathetic supporter of women who are or have experienced domestic abuse. She regularly goes the extra m..

    Former Chair of The Westminster MARAC.
  • I was fortunate to have had Sharon as my support worker after 17 years of domestic violence and 4 children that had witnessed and gone through it with me. I was finally strong enough to stand up and protect myself and my children. Without Sharon’s ..

    A survivor of domestic violence.
  • Without the support and constant reassurance of Sharon, I know for a fact that I wouldn’t be where I am today. I am forever grateful to her. She is extremely dedicated and knowledgeable, having her on my side when dealing with someone as persistent..

    Anonymous survivor of Domestic Abuse.
Read All