LETTER

Dear Invisible Illness readers and writers,

Meredith Arthur
Jul 25, 2019 · 6 min read

Hello! Welcome to the biggest mental health publication on Medium. We’re thrilled you’re here, and looking forward to learning more about you.

As editors of this pub, we believe sharing stories about mental illness is important. And that it’s not just one story from one that makes a difference — though reading the right story at the right time can change a life — it’s the layering effect of many, many stories from people from all over the world that can dent stigma and affect change.

As well as a powerful publication, Invisible Illness is a powerful community that gathers together our favorite people: the sensitive, the creative, the seeking. We learn from seeing what engages you. It’s amazing to see the publication evolve over time.

A little about us

Meredith Arthur has been working in tech since 2006 and editing Invisible Illness since 2016.

One of the early pioneers of “getting people to talk about mental health in a normal way,” she created the content and community site Beautiful Voyager in 2015 after being diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder at a neurology appointment that was supposed to be about her chronic migraines. It was named one of the best anxiety blogs of 2019 by Healthline and profiled on Vox.

Her upcoming book, Get Out of My Head, is now available for preorder.

Ryan Fan is a high school English teacher in Baltimore City, 2019 graduate of Emory University.

Ryan is a believer who writes about everything, from intersections between his Presbyterian faith, mental health, philosophy, culture, societal inequality, sports, neuroscience, politics, and television.

Outside of writing, he teaches full-time and lives in Baltimore City. He is also is a marathon runner, with a 3rd place and 2:40 marathon finish in Savannah, Georgia, in 2018, and tries to log long miles to train for marathons in major cities like Boston, New York, and Baltimore.

Marie Raven is an American expat in Norway, living with her Norwegian husband and two American cats. She’s child-free, a lifelong writer, an avid knitter, a trained vocalist, and a serious coffee drinker.

Marie was diagnosed with clinical depression in adolescence and had a bad experience in treatment which has driven her to seek healthier outlooks concerning mental illness and wellness in individuals and communities. She believes in storytelling as the best tool to learn, grow, heal, and create.

When she’s not writing nonfiction, she’s working on speculative fiction and horror stories. She’s been volunteering as a municipal liaison for National Novel Writing Month since 2010 because she loves nothing more than facilitating writers. Marie’s favorite color is red and her favorite dinosaur is stegosaurus.

Juliette Roanoke lives in Atlanta, Georgia, is a mother, registered nurse specializing in neuroscience and critical care, writer, and an avid runner. As a clinician, she is most passionate about advocating for those who cannot do so for themselves. She is determined to break down barriers keeping so many from receiving proper psychiatric treatment and is fueled by her frustrations related to the inequalities of access to quality healthcare.

She was raised by a mother who suffered from several mental health disorders, has a daughter with early-onset bipolar disorder, and suffers from several conditions herself, including schizoaffective disorder, narcolepsy, OCD, as well as several exposures to trauma. Due to the complex array of these conditions, she wants more than anything for people to continue to battle their way towards cures, remission, and peace. She firmly believes that, with enough work, feeling mentally ill does not have to be anyone’s permanent baseline.

Introducing Columnists

In addition to growing our editor pool, we’re also experimenting with a new feature on Invisible Illness: columns. Our first two new columnists are Nikki Kay and Mason Sabre, two writers with a passion for mental health education.

Nikki is passionate about raising self-aware children who can talk about and regulate their feelings.

Nikki Kay is a parent, writer and educator living outside Boston, MA, US. She only fully began coming to terms with her history of abuse, mental unwellness, and trauma after a traumatic experience as an adult led her to seek therapy. She uses her past experiences to guide her decisions in raising her own children, one of whom struggles with mental health and learning issues. Nikki is passionate about raising self-aware children who can talk about and regulate their feelings, and is committed to helping more adults reach the point where they can do the same. She has experienced invisible illness from multiple perspectives: as a survivor, educator, parent, and former clinician.

Her work deals with the psyche’s response to trauma and explores its invisible interconnection with beliefs and behavior.

Mason believes that the key to mental wellness is understanding oneself and accepting whatever that might mean.

Aside from being a writer, Mason Sabre is a parent, a teacher and a good listener. He lives in the North of England with his wife and various four-legged creatures. Mason has a keen interest in mental health and mental illness, and this 2020 will see him run the London marathon to raise money for a Mental Health charity.

Mental illness and health have always been a big part of his life. His first experience of mental illness was through his parents and living with the repercussions of his mother’s postnatal depression. Later, it was his own diagnoses of depression and OCD that led him on an adventure to understand mental illness better, including gaining a degree in Neuropsychology.
Mason believes that the key to mental wellness is understanding oneself and accepting whatever that might mean. He writes and raises money for mental illness with the hope that one day, through better education, people will understand the mental illness of themselves and others around them.

Ready to start writing?

If you’re a new writer who wants to contribute to Invisible Illness, you can join us right now by filling out this form. Need an idea of what to write about? Here’s a writing prompt for you:

Describe your idea of normalcy and how that’s changed and developed. What is “normal” to you? Do you believe in being “normal”, and if so, do you think the standard is a good thing? What experiences have shaped these beliefs?

Finally, here’s an FAQ we created to answer some of the questions we hear regularly. If you have a question, feel free to share it in a comment here. We can’t wait to read your story,

Meredith, Ryan, Marie & Juliette

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

Meredith Arthur

Written by

Content @ Pinterest. Author, Get Out of My Head, releasing Spring ’20. Founder of Beautiful Voyager.

Invisible Illness

We don't talk enough about mental health.

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