Nearly 90% of people with mental health problems have experienced stigma or discrimination, a major survey has revealed.
Of more than 7,000 people questioned, 64% said they felt isolated, 61% said they felt worthless and 60% said they felt ashamed as a result of the stigma and discrimination they had faced. A total of 68% said they felt judged.
But the results revealed that more than half of the respondents (57%) found it easier to talk about mental health problems than in previous years.
Conducted by mental health campaign Time To Change – run by charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness – the survey also found that 60% felt better once they started talking about their mental health problems, saying they felt relieved and like a weight had been lifted.
The survey, the biggest of its kind, found that as well as 88.2% of those questioned saying they experienced stigma or discrimination, 37.6% said it happened less often than every month, but more than once a year.
It was most common in friendships (63.7%), followed by family life (56.6%) and then in the workplace (56.01%).
The findings are released to coincide with Time To Talk Day – a day when people across the country are encouraged to have open conversations about mental health, in order to tackle the stigma.
The survey questioned 7,001 people in England on Time To Change’s network, aged mainly between 16 and 80.
Mark Schueler, 30, who was diagnosed with depression in late 2014, has organised the SW Coffee Morning to coincide with Time To Talk Day.
He said: “Talking about it has been quite useful to deal with thoughts going around in your head, and talking to people who have also been through clinical depression has been a great help.”
People are invited to meet at the Imperial Durbar in south-west London at 10am, before walking to Tooting Bec Common, and then returning to Imperial Durbar for coffee and a chat.