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Posted by on Jul 14, 2013 in Blog |

Blog from Darren Scully Youth Convenor IAYMH2013

Welcome to the Second International Youth Mental Health Conference Blog

Hi, I would like to start this blog by introducing myself. My name is Darren Scully. I am 21 years old and I have been an active member of Headstrong’s Youth Advisory Panel for the last 4 years now. I have been involved in volunteering as an advocate for Youth Mental Health for a little over 5 years.

I had an interest in becoming a Youth Co-Convenor at this year’s International Youth Mental Health Conference because I believe it will help move the conversation on from last year’s conference and give young people a voice like I had when I first became involved as a Youth Advisor.

I would like to start off this blog with a quote from a musical inspiration of mine. Eminem summed up mental health for me with a quote from one of his songs, “Like Toy Soldiers”.

“I am supposed to be the soldier,
Who never blows his composure,
Yet holds the weight of the whole
World on my shoulders”

To me this quote felt like it was aimed directly at everyone that felt they had to bottle everything up and not let it out. I think Eminem felt that society was asking too much from these people which gave them an image which gave that person a status.

To me, this alone shows so many stigmas and straight away Eminem is trying to tell them that they don’t have to feel like this or it will tear them up in the long run.

As I was growing up and trying to understand society, I felt I had to have an appearance as male figure. This appearance or role made me feel like I had to be the soldier within my family, friends, surrounds and create a symbol for those people within my life.

This feeling was one reason why I got involved in not only song writing but mental health promotion. I personally didn’t like the idea of suicide or self-harm so when Headstrong came along I felt it was natural and the right thing to do.

Mental health was finally summed up for me not by attending Youth Advisor Panel meetings but by a video I found on Youtube recently “Secrets to Success” for a year this video has motivated and put true values on me as a person.

There was one quote in it that annoyed me for that year and it is what explained in my opinion what mental health is. This athlete had a huge successful career up until last year when it was all taken from him and he is the last person I would ever think said;

“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute,
Or an hour, or a day, or even a year
But eventually it will subside and
Something else will take its place.
If I quit however, it lasts forever”

Lance Armstrong

I leave you with this quote and look forward to seeing you in Brighton and if you haven’t already, can I ask you to take this opportunity to consider becoming a member of the IAYMH by visiting It’s free and a great way to get involved in shaping the debate around youth mental health. If you don’t feel up to becoming a member please follow us on twitter @iaymh and anything you tweet about the conference or about the IAYMH please #iaymh2013.

I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it

Peace for now,

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