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Bisexuality and mental health: Patrick’s story of self-acceptance

This is Patrick’s story.

Patrick* is 50-years-old and has struggled with his mental health for several years. He’s experienced problems with substance misuse, bereavement, sexuality, identity and self-harm.

He first called Guide-Line around eight years ago and this was the first step in turning his life around. He became a regular caller, with Guide-Line workers encouraging him to explore aspects of self-care, giving him guidance and coping techniques for self-harm, and supporting him with self-acceptance and understanding of his sexuality as a bisexual, Catholic man.

You have helped more than you can ever imagine.

He also sometimes shares his poems to express his feelings, which helps him cope with stress and anxiety, and Guide-Line gives him the space to use this therapeutic approach.

On a recent call to Guide-Line, Patrick spoke about his gratitude to Guide-Line for supporting him over the years and described that although he has had many challenges in life, Guide-Line has been there for him and has helped him through the hard times.

Seven or eight years I hadn’t come out of the closet, I was using hard drugs, it was getting worse and you help me understand my sexuality and accept myself for who I am; a bisexual Catholic man. My drug use was partly due to not coming out of the closet and Guide-Line helped me with this and understanding myself.

Patrick now goes for long periods drug-free and no longer self-harms at all. His goal is now to get healthier and stronger as he wants to attend Pride this year and get into a relationship. He knows he can still call Guide-Line for support as and when needed.

*name has been changed to protect confidentiality.

A poem by Patrick:

An uneducated mind

All my knowledge I’ve learnt

Is from living life

From the streets

Down the main drag

Of many cities

The people I’ve met

And their crazy wisdom

Along the road of life

To here today faze and fade

In the mist and haze

Another chapter begins for me

Time passes quickly on by

My oh my

Two birds with one stone

Nine lives I’ve lived

Give or take a bit

Hop and skip dance and sing

Poor man or king

Loaded or skint

Life can be cruel

Life can be kind

Leave all your worries behind

Learn to love yourself and life.

If you’re struggling with your mental health and feel like you need to talk to someone, our free helpline Guide-Line is open every day of the year from 8am to 12am (midnight). Call 08001 884 884 or use our live chat. You’re not alone – our friendly team is here to listen and support you. 

Posted on: 17th February 2023

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