Our Favourite Children’s Books about Mental Health and Wellbeing

Today is World Mental Health Day, a day I often like to reflect and think about how far I’ve come in regards to my own mental health. Since coming to terms with it, and understanding that just like any visible or physical injury; where you need to make adjustments due a sudden change, mental health needs to be treated exactly the same way.

On good days I don’t pick my arms, I don’t feel nauseous, and tasks around the home are streamline and effortless. On bad days, well, you get the drift. Over the past few years I’ve been more open and honest about how I’m feeling, and likewise I’ve stopped and really listened to the signs of my mind telling me it’s struggling.

Not only that, one of the other benefits to addressing and taking control of my own mental health is now being able to recognise when others are struggling – primarily friends, but especially my family. Sharon and I haven’t always been the best at expressing, but now that we have a child we’ve become a lot better at expressing ourselves as well as inviting T to express how he’s feeling. This is now amplified now that T has started school which often comes with waves of emotions and awkward social situations.

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How to Build an LGBTQ-friendly Library for your Children

Before T was even born, Sharon and I were talking about our favourite books and what kind of books T would likely have on his shelves. Classics like; Guess How Much I Love You, Spot, and Goodnight Moon were all up there, but, very quickly, we realised that families like us were rarely represented in children’s books.

At first it was pretty easy to navigate around, we would perhaps change the odd “mum” to a “dad” so that there were two dads in a story, or visa versa; replacing the odd “dad” with a “mama”. But as time went on, or when T started wanting to look at the pictures in the books and subsequently challenging our choice in character, we realised we had to expand our library to make sure he was represented, not to mention show him a fair representation of society!

We already had a few diverse and inclusive books in our collection, but no where near enough LGBTQ books – we needed more.

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T’s Reads: Book Advent Calendar 2018 – Week Three

Just like the rest of the world, I cannot believe how fast December has gone. I thought having a lot of our Christmas shopping done early December would have meant December would have been a bit more chilled, but alas, the month clearly has other plans! 

This is probably the last time where we will see a full week of Book Advents, as the following week we’ll only have three more days until Christmas! But not to worry, I’ll have something extra for our last week to go with our last remaining books.

If you haven’t read what we found last week, you can read about this here.

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T’s Reads: Book Advent Calendar 2018 – Week Two

Another week, another week of book advents completed. I’ve actually now forgotten what books we’ve bought T, so it’s now become bit of a surprise for us too! 

If you haven’t read what we found during our first week, you can read about this here.

This week has been really fun. We’ve had a lovely variety of stories and had quite a few laughs along the way. Oddly though, looking back at all the books we’ve found so far, the one thing that’s stood out this year are the amount of books that feature animals in them as their main characters.

This then made me look at T’s other books to see what they featured, and this also showed a huge amount of animals. It’s not that I have an issue with this, I’m now just curious as to why that is? 

Anyway, I digress.

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T’s Reads: Book Advent Calendar 2018 – Week One

Following the fun we had from last year’s Book Advent, we’ve decided to do another book advent for this year. As mentioned previously, this isn’t because we’re anti-chocolate advents (he also gets a little chocolate coin) this is because we’re simply book mad in this house and like finding any excuse to add more to his collection.

For those of you interested in doing your own, but are concerned about cost, this doesn’t cost us much at all. We often start collecting the books throughout the year, either by scouring charity shops, garden centres, etc. or looking online at places like The Book People or The Works who often have good deals on book bundles.

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T’s Reads: Alien Nation by Matty Donaldson

This week was National Coming Out Day. If you’ve not heard of it or had your head in the sand for 24 hours, it’s a day to celebrate the coming out of the LGBTQ community (as a member or as an ally). We’ve written our feelings about the day before, which you can find over here.

Founded in the United States in 1988, the initial idea was grounded in the feminist and gay liberation spirit of the personal being political, and the emphasis on the most basic form of activism being coming out to family, friends and colleagues, and living life as an openly lesbian or gay person. The foundational belief is that homophobia thrives in an atmosphere of silence and ignorance, and that once people know that they have loved ones who are lesbian or gay, they are far less likely to maintain homophobic or oppressive views.

Wikipedia

As well as a form of protest, it’s also an opportunity for members of the community to educate others on the language they use and advise others on what they can do to help those still in the proverbial closet.

In keeping with the theme, we were recently sent a children’s book that does this.

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