Alastair Campbell on Brexit undermining his opinions
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Good Morning Britain presenter Alastair Campbell has candidly spoken about his mental health over the past year and a half during the coronavirus pandemic, revealing that he suffered from a bad “suicidal” episode. Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, the ITV host, 64, spoke about joining forces with revolutionary mental health platform Just Ask A Question, as well as what living through depressive episodes has taught him.
One of them was really bad when I was actually quite suicidal
When asked how his mental health has been over the course of the Covid pandemic, the political strategist said he had been coping quite well in general.
Alastair said: “It’s been not bad, up and down, but generally quite good.
“I published my book on depression [Living Better: How I Learned to Survive Depression] which was a bestseller, so that was good.”
However, the former Labour press secretary candidly said that he did experience some deterioration in his mental health.
He went on: “I think I’ve handled it quite well, but the truth is since the start of Covid, I’ve probably had about four or five depressive episodes.
“One of them [was] really bad when I was actually quite suicidal,” Alastair added.
“Not related to Covid, I don’t think, at all, I just think it was kind of – whatever.”
He continued: “I’ve also had a couple of manic episodes as well.”
Despite struggling with his mental health, the political strategist said that his issues highlighted the importance of maintaining relationships in his life.
He continued: “One of the key things – and probably the most important thing that I’ve understood, and it took me a long time to get there – is you really have to work on the most important relationships in your life.
“What was interesting about lockdown is that it was an amazing feeling to realise, ‘Do you know what? I quite like being with Fiona [his wife] all the time’.
Speaking about how he maintains his mental health on a daily basis, Alastair opened up about his routine.
He said: “I’ve been quite creative; I swim every morning, I walk the dog every morning, I listen to a lot of music rather than news, I exercise everyday, I’ve kept busy in terms of work.”
Alastair joined forces with Danny Gray, founder of male make-up brand War Paint for Men to revolutionise mental health support.
The writer features on the website Just Ask A Question, which sees him answer questions about his battle with depression in an interactive experience.
The platform also offers advice and experience from world leading health professionals and other well-known figures who have suffered from mental illness.
Speaking about the platform, founder Danny said: “Our vision for JAAQ is to change the world of mental health, one question at a time.
“There’s lots of work being done with mental health at the moment around awareness, breaking down stigma and supporting people in crisis, but this is the first solution to support individuals and the people close to them from the very beginning of their journey, in order to prevent them reaching that crisis stage.”
Speaking about opening up for the website, Alastair said he answered over 150 questions about his depression.
Addressing the state of mental health support, he said: “The ideal thing is that you have a doctor, you know your doctor and you trust your doctor, that’s the ideal right?
“But most people don’t have that relationship so if they go and see a doctor they can often be very, very scared about admitting to a receptionist what the problem is.”
He continued: “They can be very anxious about seeing a doctor or the relationship might not work, and a lot of people don’t want to talk to a family member, they don’t want to talk to their boss, their colleague or whatever.”
Speaking about JAAQ, Aastair said: “It feels like you’re having a proper conversation but your conscious mind knows who I am.
“It’s like you’re having a conversation in secret, but you can offload an awful lot of stuff and get something back.”
If you need support or advice, you can contact the Samaritans helpline by calling 116 123.
The helpline is free and open 24 hours a day every day of the year. You can also contact Samaritans by emailing [email protected]
Source: Read Full Article