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Depression

I am depressed and I have decided to get help

When I fell off my attic ladder last year and ended up in hospital, it was the latest in a string of physical mishaps that led some of my friends to call me parliament’s Mr Bump.

First I had done in my knee running for a vote and ended up on crutches. Then I was assaulted on a train in a way that was not in truth very serious but people imagined was painful, particularly when a CCTV image of my rather well-built assailant was released to the media.

All of this was a bit embarrassing but nothing to hide away or be ashamed of. Hell, I even agreed to let my local paper, the North-West Evening Mail, come and take a picture of me in hospital after my ladder escapade.

So, because brilliant, inspiring people have had the courage to speak up and make the case that my latest ailment shouldn’t be treated any differently from these physical injuries, I am just going to come right out and say that I am clinically depressed. I went to see a doctor this week who prescribed me medication to relieve my black moods.

I am very much hoping that my constituents and fellow parliamentarians won’t notice much of a difference from me popping pills. I have mostly managed to avoid moping about like Eeyore up until now, and am assured that the anti-depressants I am taking will not induce any inappropriate “you’re my best mate” euphoria in the House of Commons chamber.

But I felt I needed to do something because the painfully long time it is taking to recover from banging my head when I fell off the ladder means there are regular periods when I am left utterly drained by simple tasks and barely able to get out of bed – and that exhaustion can make me really down. Continue reading John's story by clicking here

 

John Woodcock, MP for Barrow and Furness