Thursday, 4 February 2016

A Change in Content

When I was in preparation for discharge from the long-term hospital in Bradford at the end of August  2014, I had a huge decision to make. I had became aware that if I were to continue my blog moving on from hospital, there'd be a drastic change to its content. And my worry, was that this might disengage my readers/followers. I think it was reasonable of me to assume that people were reading I'm NOT Disordered to see my day-to-day life in a psychiatric hospital; which often included restraints, self-harm, disagreements and incidents between patients, and intense therapy sessions. Moving into a short-term ward and then into the community, I knew it would mean that would all change. I was far beyond needing to be restrained, my self-harm was incredibly minor, there were no patient disagreements as I was living alone and although I still went to therapy for some time after my discharge, it wasn't as upsetting or intense. I worried that my readers wouldn't be inclined to read, what I deemed to be less interesting content.
One of my aims in starting I'm NOT Disordered was to educate people on life in a psychiatric hospital to provide a rare insight into an aspect of mental health that probably instigates the most stigma. And so, I wondered how I could adapt this aim for it to still be relevant if my content were to change so drastically. Eventually, I was able to see that those who had been following the blog since its beginning (January 2013) might be invested in my actual journey through mental health recovery, and would therefore continue to read so that they could see how I improved and the changes that were made to my life. 
I'd say that this was the first time the content of the blog changed. The second, and most recent, hasn't  been so obvious as it wasn't sparked off by a significant life event as the first had been. It's been so gradual, that I, myself had barely noticed. Each day, I move another step through recovery; no matter whether that be backwards or forwards and so it's inevitable that there is still that variety in my posts of positive ones when I'm loving my life, and negative ones when I just want to stay in bed all day. But this is another aspect of my content that's changed; the quantity of positive posts is forever increasing as my mental improves alongside my coping mechanisms. Another cause for change in my content has been the ever increasing success of I'm NOT Disordered, in some ways I think it's becoming more of a business as I'm being offered the most wonderful opportunities. This also means that there are now many posts completely dedicated to each of there e.g. events I attend or campaigns I help with etc. And I'm becoming aware that there are more of these type of posts than there are personal ones. It's difficult because it's not as though I'm not disclosing hard times... I'm genuinely not having any! Sure there are days when I'm so tired that I start to feel sad and a bit hopeless so I either take sedatives or just go right off to sleep and I wake up happy again. 
After putting some thought into it, ultimately, my blog is about my life and so attending events and collaborating with others is a large part of my life. Going in to 2016 though, I will be adding more personal posts so that personal content is no longer limited to my advice and the lessons I have learnt posts. I just want you all to know that it's something I am both aware of, and working on. It's difficult though because (without sounding big headed) I don't think there's bloggers out there like me, so I have nothing to refer to for answers, inspiration and advice. I follow beauty and fashion blogs and so the biggest content changes are those about new products and/or a change in fashion trends.

If there is anything you would like to see/read on I'm NOT Disordered then please drop me an email at aimeewilson@live.co.uk or send me a tweet: @aimes_wilson