How Much Does One Reveal to Strangers?

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How Much Does One Reveal to Strangers?


How much of one's inner self

Does one reveal

On a public stage, to strangers?


A mental health problem

With it's ups and downs?

Mania controlled with lithium

And other mood stabilisers?


Why should it bother you poet?

It's just like a physical illness

But one you can't see


Too personal they tell me

Don't talk about it


But how can we accept

And understand you if it's not shared?


We can't


Don Matthews June 2019


◄ Maryon Wants Me To Write Edgy

Wavemaker. But... ►


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jennifer Malden

Sat 15th Jun 2019 15:32

Don - I know several people who are considered pillars of society with important (to them anyway), lives, but whom to me and not only to me, are seriously mentally ill! If you can be as amusing and lighthearted as your writing is the drugs are obviously the right stuff, or you are much less seriously ill than they think!??


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M.C. Newberry

Fri 14th Jun 2019 16:15

The outside view of mental illness is influenced by the fact that it's
often hidden - unlike physical affliction - and can be viewed with
trepidation because of its unpredictability, real or suspected.
For example - I have a personal street experience of being
assaulted from behind by a woman - the only person near enough to have done the deed - without warning or the
use of a bag she was swinging In her hand. Happily for me, its
content wasn't hard (e.g. a brick!) and I was more surprised than
hurt as I watched her head away from me as if nothing had happened.
A nearby witness shook his head in disbelief - and so did I.
Control is certainly the name of the game - self or imposed.
At that moment the fashionable political mantra of that time "care in the community" had a hollow ring to it.

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Don Matthews

Fri 14th Jun 2019 14:25


My demon is drugged and locked in a cage but occasionally it knocks on my door.

Writing is good therapy. Gets it up and out. Maybe that's why I use so much humour. To battle my demon? I wonder? hmm.....

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Fri 14th Jun 2019 14:16

I wish you well, man. Keep writing. Best therapy going.

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Don Matthews

Fri 14th Jun 2019 13:43


I agree with you that 'the real me is not defined by my mental illness - the real me is defined by the way I live my life and the way I treat others.'

My purpose in writing this is I believe mental illness is still treated by many as taboo and not to be talked about. There is a stigma attached which has to be removed if we are to make progress. This can only be done if it is aired and brought out in the open

As I have attempted to do here....

From the edgy to the deadly serious ....what is he coming to? ?

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Brian Maryon

Fri 14th Jun 2019 13:14've been very open about being bipolar. Many times.

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Fri 14th Jun 2019 12:56

Well done Don

<Deleted User> (21487)

Fri 14th Jun 2019 11:47

what has got into you? the real you is not defined by mental illness - the real you is defined by the way you live your life and the way you treat others.
And this 'poet?' has every reason to be grateful to you.
I would have felt too insecure to stay on the Blog without a 'helping hand'

Thank you Don.


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Fri 14th Jun 2019 11:06

Thanks for posting this Don. It's a big topic and important to give it light and air. Bon Courage ><>

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Don Matthews

Fri 14th Jun 2019 09:35

I don't believe in hiding mental illness.
Mine is kept in check with drugs.
Everyone is happy.

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