SHARON Yardley is a mum, and a teacher, and she has bipolar.
After a psychotic episode whilst teaching ten years ago, she has fought hard and worked to function, whilst having bipolar disorder.
Recently, Sharon has published her first book ‘Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’, a book about her mental health journey, aiming to overcome the stigma of mental health.
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Her book covers her lowest of lows, as well as her process to heal and live in a society where bipolar is pushed to the back.
“We (society) like to think that there is no stigma, until it affects us.
“It’s fine until it’s not,” Sharon said.
“I started blogging, and people started paying attention and listening.
“People started reaching out saying that I was writing how they feel.
“It grew from there in a really organic way.
I started writing longer versions of my stories and it all just came out.
“It (the book) was done within a year,” she said.
Sharon spoke with News Of The Area about the power of sharing her story with people, and expressing the absolute truth of her journey.
“I would hide it at work.
“I wouldn’t want them to judge me.
“If you call up a job and say that you have a broken foot, you’ll get a couple of days off, but we still live in a time where you can’t call up and say that you’re struggling with mental health and just need a few days,” said Sharon.
Sharon hopes that ‘Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’ can find its way to people who need to hear her story.
Her goal is to ensure that people start breaking down the barriers and stigma of mental health, particularly in higher professions.
She hopes that one day, mental health will be normalised, and that there will be an understanding of all illnesses, including bipolar.
For more information about her book, or to read her blog, head to her website. https://mybeautifulbipolar.com/
By Tara CAMPBELL