About seven hours ago I woke up to the news Britain had voted to leave the EU, I didn’t stay up through the night to watch the results coming in, as I wanted to stick to my sleep routine, and I was concerned watching it could trigger some mental health issues. But as I woke up to the news that not only had we left nut the financial markets were already crashing I knew it was bad, and I felt a part of me break.
This was a campaign which was badly run from both sides, all of the good information, the facts about the EU were somehow forgotten and left in the dust for smaller campaigns like the Green Party’s GreenerIn and Another Europe Is Possible to distribute, but they didn’t have the access to mass media that the main campaigns had and so distribution of the facts didn’t get out as well as it should.
Both the main campaigns should hang their heads in shame that they made this a campaign of fear-mongering, preying on people’s worries of immigration (which I said over and over again on soctal media would make no difference whatever the result, we have been an island which attracts migrants for hundreds of years and nothing will change this).
Already today since the leave camp have won…
- Nigel Farage retracted the £350m per week to the NHS claim which was plastered all over their battle bus
- FTSE and the Pound at lowest for 30+ yrs.
- The Prime Minister has resigned without any forward planning.
I don’t blame the voters, they did what they did and that is that. I do blame people who didn’t vote, who didn’t pull their socks up and make a decision. People have fought and died for the freedom to vote and yet something like 30% of the population just couldn’t be arsed, especially when there were so many 16/17 year olds desperate to vote who couldn’t.
That being said as leave voters post on social media about us all being friends I feel a disconnect from people who were previously friends. In truth, the decision to leave has fundamentally changed my life, I am grieving for what we have lost, my hopes for campaigning for a changed EU are gone, and I feel ripped from part of my identity. Forgiving what feels like such a large betrayal isn’t as easy as liking a post on Facebook or commenting an agreement to “let’s all be friends” this is going to take time and healing.
I have never considered myself English or British. I have always considered myself European, I have made use of Freedom of Movement, not just for holidays but to live and work in other EU countries. I have friends in other countries, and I have neighbours of multiple nationalities and that makes me proud to be European.
This vote makes me ashamed of the country I was born in, it makes me ashamed to see people on the TV saying “send ’em all home”, or “it’s to stop the Muslims”. People I love are liking Britain First Facebook posts forever changing my opinion of them. Farage declared this our “Independence Day”, I will never forget this day but I will certainly not be celebrating or cheering the demise of something wonderful and unified, for the introduction of something selfish and hate filled. This has had a fundamental impact on our every day lives already, it has put splits in families and torn friendships apart.
I have seen many people today who like me have been heavily affected by this, they are worried for their mental health. I saw my care coordinator first thing and even she was hurting this morning. It gave me clarity, showed me this isn’t a mental health issue. All of us in the remain camp are hurting today, we are unified, and can support each other with love and compassion.
Fellow blogger Sarah, wrote an excellent post on looking after your mental health if you are struggling which I highly recommend…head this way…
I am truly afraid of what the future will bring, I have never felt that way before, even when we were relying on the food bank and facing homelessness did I not feel as hopeless and afraid as I feel right now.