Ruby Wax and my Mad Confession
I am the founder of Uncovered magazine and online, a wife and a mum. I am passionate about promoting good mental health. Having suffered OCD, panic disorder and agoraphobia I realised just how poor the resources for mental health were and I wanted to change this. I hope and dream that I can help other people access information and services that will make their journey a little easier and more supported.
My favourite quote - 'It is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain' V. Greene - As I have many times danced in the rain!
Please see Charlotte Fantelli website
Ruby Wax and my Mad Confession
For those of you who read my blogs you will know that I am Charlotte Fantelli, 28, the editor of Mental Healthy, the founder of Uncovered magazine, and have had my own personal struggle with anxiety disorders. Well Monday 23rd the rest of the country will know too!
Three months ago I agreed to take part in a documentary for Channel 4 called ‘Ruby Wax’s Mad Confessions’. Easy, I thought, I openly discuss mental health on here, and I must admit I like the sound of my own voice (most of the time), so this should be simple...
The programme focuses on successful people who have struggled with mental illness. Quite a unique concept when you consider the ‘criminal’ or ‘weak’ portrayals of mental illness most media like to put on our screens and papers. That is why I agreed to take part in the show and allow myself to let myself be vulnerable… Not something a control freak like myself finds easy!
I spent the first few weeks with the crew showing off how far I had come and trying desperately not to allow myself to consider just how far I have left to go! But, in true programme maker fashion, by the end of the process they’d cut through the mask and as I sat there over the table from Ruby Wax with tears in my eyes, I realised some things cannot be erased by time or apparent 'success'.
The programme made me look at myself through new eyes. It made me see my breakthroughs – running Mental healthy, launching Uncovered magazine, being a director at a technology firm Fusion Data Technology, and tech product CubeITz, being responsible for designing brands that are now worth over £4.5million... And of course being a wife and a mummy! It also made me realise that I’m human and there are things I still hide even from myself - like why I still wash my hands 30 times a day and have a desperate need for control.
After loving it, hating it, crying about it, screaming about it, asking myself loudly ‘why the F**k am I doing it?’ (and realising I was still mic’d)! After all of this I am very glad I did it. Why? Well, when I was sat housebound with agoraphobia, if I could, even just for one minute, have contemplated that those ‘successful’ people I see on TV, once had the fears and inner hell I felt, then it may have given me hope in a hopeless time.
As I say in an interview about it ‘If only I had seen the reality, the flaws that we all carry, the oddities, the secrets, the struggles that everyone faces. If I had seen that I wasn’t alone, I wasn’t a failure, but someone who had quite simply reacted to seeing TOO much… If I had seen others I viewed as a ‘success’ admitting they too are ‘human’, then maybe I would have had more strength to fight those battles that robbed me of too many years.
So today I still struggle, I still have bad days, but if at my worst I knew there was a life like this waiting for me, I would have donned my latex gloves, and danced for joy at my success, my blessings and all those quirky things that make me peculiar – those things that make me all I am today.
I really hope and pray by sharing my vulnerable self, I make even one person know there is hope for them too.
Please do tune in to Ruby Wax’s Mad Confessions: Monday 23rd July at 10pm on Channel 4.