A HARINGEY YOUTH PUBLICATION
free Oct 08
Pssst! Voices In Your Head Media Control Peer Pressure
This issue’s contributors...
Mithi Nguyen editorial team
Shian Plummer reporter
Gisela dos Santos reporter, poetry
Evi Koumi editorial team
Rebecca Craig reporter
Josh Büyükyilmaz fim reviews
Eliot Faulkner-Scott reporter
Lara Lindon problems
Perpetual Brade news
Victoria Opyrcha reporter, designer
Aoife Kurta reporter
Danny Fry editorial team
The Bigger Shoe Box, Muswell Hill Centre, Hillfield Park, N10 3QJ Tel: 020 8883 0260 Fax: 020 8883 2906 Mob: 07947 884 282 Email: email@example.com Website: www.exposure.org.uk
The Cedar Group, 31- 41 Worship, London, EC2A 2DX
Regrettably our office is inaccessible to wheelchair users but we will nevertheless make every effort to include your contributions
Disclaimer Exposure aims to give young people an independent voice which can contribute to the democratic process. While Exposure has done its best to check material contained within this publication, we cannot accept responsibility for inaccurate information provided by outside organisations. Organisations mentioned are not necessarily connected with nor endorsed by Exposure. Permission has been sought, wherever possible, for the use of copyright material. Where contact has not been possible we hope that, as a voluntary organisation helping to educate and inform young people, it is acceptable for Exposure to use such material for the benefit of young people.
Issue 95 September 2008
Exposure is free and open to anyone aged 13 to 19 living in or around Haringey. If you want to get into journalism, design or film-making, get involved.
Khashwana Burton reporter
Joey Leskin editorial, reporter
Brayan Vargas designer
Selina Tucker illustrator
Camila Lopes designer, illustrator
You leave a tube station and in front of you is a man who smashes a rolled up newspaper in your face - such is the nature of London etiquette these days. Unfortunately, it seems there is no tube station exit safe from these attacks, which occur on a daily basis and from two different publications: The London Paper is a free newspaper, which shows pictures of minor celebrities in London, tells stories of minor events in London and devotes at least 97% of its space to advertising. The London Lite is a free newspaper that shows pictures of minor celebrities in London, tells stories of minor events in London and devotes at least 97% of its space to advertising.
Itâ€™s so nice to be given such a big choice of reading material-turned-weapon that we bin, or...bin. As young people we have things forced upon us constantly - whether itâ€™s these free newspapers , celebrity dieting, friends trying to influence us or, sometimes, our own minds independently controlling the things we see and do. Being influenced and directed to accept information is a part of being a young person. The type of person you are depends on when to accept something offered to you, and when to refuse it. Think on and always pay attention. JL
by Josh Büyükyilmaz
THE DARK KNIGHT It’s been 42 years since the Batman television show first aired. And now we get the latest instalment from Christopher Nolan, The Dark Knight (the only Batman movie without ‘Batman’ in the title). Christian Bale returns as the Caped Crusader (Val Kilmer is better) along side Michael Caine as Alfred (Michael Gough is better) and Gary Oldman as Lieutenant Gordon (Pat Hingle is better), but now there’s a new criminal on the lose laughing at everyone in Gotham City. Introducing Heath Ledger as Clown Prince of Crime, the Joker. We see the ongoing battle between Batman and the Joker. The Joker brings forth chaos to the streets and makes it a personal agenda to take out the Dark Knight. Explosions, fist fights and mind games commence as Gotham is brought to its knees. This will get your bat-blood racing.
MAMMA MIA! Mamma Mia! is based on the hit West End musical of the same name, featuring the music of ABBA. The film tells the story of Donna, an independent single mother, who owns a small hotel on a Greek island. Her daughter (Sophie) is getting married, and Donna has invited her two lifelong best girlfriends. Sophie, on a quest to find the identity of her father to walk her down the aisle, brings back three men from Donna‘s past. Over 24 chaotic, magical hours, new love will bloom and old romances will be rekindled on this lush island full of possibilities... This film has a great cast, but is a musical, and not to mention seriously cheesy. I suggest that people under 12 and over 50 should see this movie because I thought that this film was seriously depressing.
HANCOCK Will Smith stars in this action comedy as a Superman-like hero who has fallen out with the public. That’s until he saves a PR guy who tries to help him regain the respect of the people in their hour of need. Even though Hancock is not a real comic book character, he’s charasmatic enough to centre a movie around. The film even has an appreance from the writer of both Batman Forever and Batman & Robin movies. Even if it was a real comic book I don’t think it would sell because of its forgettable title.
things ‘n’ stuff
YOUNG HARINGEY HEROES Superman. He’s got nothing on us. Apart from the fact that he’s invincible. Still he’s been around since the Thirties, plenty of time to hone his skills as a hero. Haringey’s Heroes are much younger, yet they’re still managing to make a positive difference to the lives of the people around them. Last month Haringey Council hosted an evening in order to give recognition to those young people who have donated time and effort into achieving something amazing. The young people were presented with awards in 11 categories to reflect the wide range of activities and achievements. The picture above shows the winners and runners-up.
Year Dot is social networking with a positive spin, enabling young people to learn about issues and subjects that are important to them, then discuss them through posting to each other and vblogging.
Sex education is important in helping and supporting young people through their physical, emotional and moral development, yet it is a complex subject, which should be discussed in a sensitive manner.
The representation of young people in the media is terrible. We’re made out to be horrible, despicable people, blights on society. Year Dot stands for a fresh start both in terms of a new path for young people and for how they are depicted in the media. Year Dot focuses on young people with a dream and the motivation to help change how they are perceived.
It appears that many young teenagers are having unprotected sex. There has been a 63% increase in the number of young people contracting sexually transmitted diseases. In order to combat this, as well as other problems facing young people, the Truetube website was set up. It’s like Youtube for young people - you can watch short films on all aspects of safe sex and getting tested for STIs – there’s also an interview with a young women who caught STIs from her boyfriend, she talks about coping with the problems of being infected.
The website will help make this change and will consist of videos and video diaries promoting the positive aspects of being young, as well as other stuff like blogs. These will be uploaded on a daily basis. The first 10 episodes will air Monday to Friday for two weeks between the 22 September and the 3 October. The time has come for young people to take an active roll in the fight for fair representation of young people in the press, and Year Dot is leading the charge! Visit the website at www.yeardot.co.uk to get started
For more information visit www.truetube. co.uk, and go to the categories ‘love and sex’ and ‘body and health’. Truetube also has plenty of films on other issues affecting young people every day, such as depression, poverty, crime, and eating disorders. Khashawna Burton & Rebecca Lovell
Khashawna Burton & Rebecca Lovell
Rebecca Craig on resisting temptations...
Since Year 10, our interpretation of the word ‘party’ has changed dramatically. In the clique I hang around in, throwing a soiree without alcohol and drugs is seen as a social faux pas. It’s Saturday, the morning (or should I say, mid-day) after the party of the night before and we’re all finally waking up in someone’s living room – not sure whose. I’ve been in this situation before, but I’m not a party animal. I’m one of the few in my group who doesn’t call getting drunk and stoned ‘a good time.’
one of the few in “ I’m my group who doesn’t call getting drunk and stoned ‘a good time’
“The best thing about staying sober is that I can remind you of all the embarrassing things you did last night”, I tell my bleary-eyed friends, who look on with scorn; I’m the only one without a headache, hehe. Not that I’ve never been tempted. I wouldn’t call myself a ‘straight edge’ as I’ve drunk at parties before, but I’ve never touched drugs and I’ve never drunk so much that I’m throwing up. The fact that most teenagers drink alcohol probably won’t shock people – according to a recent report in The Independent, twice as many youngsters drink now than they did a decade ago. But perhaps it’s more shocking that, according to the most recent British Crime Survey, 21.3% of teenagers have taken an illicit drug, which include class As. Look around an average classroom; at least six of the students have consumed
a drug like cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy or heroin according to these findings. My friends joined those statistics; they were blissfully unaware (or just didn’t care) of the consequences of using cannabis and did it anyway. I was failing to see the point of smoking something that was both illegal and bad for your health. I can remember being at one particular party and almost everyone was sitting in a circle smoking dope out of a homemade bong. As the night progressed their behaviour became more and more bemusing. There was a lot of high-pitched giggling and falling over. It doesn’t really bother me that everyone else smokes weed, or in some cases worse, I’m just glad it’s not me. Even though I’m defiant in my choice not to take drugs, I’m not going to be the person who goes pulling joints out of people’s mouths and preach to them about how bad it is. Other people can smoke or snort whatever they want as long as they don’t try to make me do it. If they do, I will say ‘no’, we have more self-control than adults think. Teenagers experiment, they always have and always will, and this is our time to get things wrong. I’m not going to preach and say that you should never take drugs. I’m also not issuing an open invitation and saying it’s perfectly OK for teenagers to go and take illegal and dangerous substances. Anyone who is thinking about experimenting should consider the consequence, both good and bad and make an educated choice. It’s your decision regardless of what your friends want you to do, and they will pressure you. You have to feel confident that you’re making the right choice. If you’re not, you shouldn’t.
For advice on this or any other issue see the list of local services in the directory on p27
The police treat us unfairly says Shain Plummer. Being young, being black, being male – it means I attract attention. I get stopped all the time - not from anyone special, just the police. I can’t understand why I have to be stopped and searched continuously. Just because there exists a minority of young black men of my age that misbehave and get up to foolishness: stabbing and shooting each other, selling drugs - why put me in that category? I hate it. It’s one of the biggest stereotypes we face. Sometimes I can walk down the road without being stopped but if it’s not me it’s another boy. And it’s not like I know what he’s up to, obviously, but it’s easy to make assumptions that he’s done something wrong, even if he hasn’t.
Once I was with my friend and they said, “your bike was involved in a robbery and it was reported stolen”, we looked at each confused; he’d got the bike that same morning for his birthday. They abuse the authority given to them; they think they know everything. It’s stuff like that that makes me angry because they come across as barely knowing anything, especially how to communicate with us.
police would stop me, not to ask me what happened, but to see if I was carrying a knife
The police are to blame, but not solely we’ve got to take responsibility also. As young people we often make it hard for ourselves. If most of us were not stubborn and aggressive when dealing with police it would make confrontations between them and us easier. Unnecessary stops create tension among young people, but, if you think about it, they’re just doing their jobs - they should just find a less bossy way of doing things.
to get into a fight “ IfandI was I was bleeding, the
I’ve seen it all from the police - just because he has a badge and a number on him doesn’t mean he can talk to me disrespectfully – after working hours he’s a normal person going home to his family, like me. I also don’t appreciate when they lie to me - there may be crime in the area but come on, to them, everyone ‘matches the description’ of who they’re looking for. They’ve stopped me and let me go, and I’ve then seen them say the exact same thing to someone else. Do they realise the message that sends out to young people? It’s as if they fabricate the truth to victimise us. They say ‘section 16 & 31’ but this isn’t a language I understand. It would be helpful to be told why they’re stopping me in real English rather than ambiguous codes. But when you question them they say: “we can’t answer questions, we’re too busy” or think I’m being cheeky or rude.
I know if my house was burgled I would expect the police to sort the situation out. They’re supposed to make better living for everyone and to try to make the streets safer, not to make people’s lives miserable. The police need to assess the way they do things - they may search and ruff up someone but by doing so they’re causing conflict. A more friendly approach could produce the same results and relieve tension. The next time I get stopped and searched I’m just going to sit back, smile and let them do their thing. When it next happens to you think of this. Both the police and youngsters have to change their attitudes towards each other, they need to start communicating, and to start showing each other equal amounts of respect. As the adults, it has to start with the them.
For advice on this or any other issue see the list of local services in the directory on p27
Eliot Scott-Faulkner says you could kill yourself (if you’re terminally ill and in pain). George Exoo has helped kill 102 people, more than Jack the Ripper, Charles Manson, and Ted Bundy put together – and some call him a hero. He is a leading figure in the pro euthanasia movement Right-To-Die, who feel that people should be able to end the life of an individual suffering from a terminal illness or an incurable condition, if the sufferer desires it. A lot is made of civil liberties, of freedom, of the right to live a private life. What is rarely discussed is the right to end your own life through medical means. However, euthanasia is an issue that is becoming increasingly relevant to modern Britain. The Earth is over-populated, suicide rates are rising and there are more OAPs than ever before. Euthanasia is an easy and efficient solution, but is it ethical?
In recent times, there have been hundreds of cases where euthanasia has been illegally practiced - people like “Reverend Death” George Exoo and “Doctor Death” Jack
Kevorkian both boast they’ve “assisted” hundreds of people to take their own lives. They believe they are working for a good cause, helping those who cannot help themselves. But, both men have been criticised for abusing their power, for pushing the depressed and unstable
beings, who “ Asthinkhuman and act for ourselves, we should be able to decide when and how we die
over the edge when there exists a chance of recovery. Surely if euthanasia was legalised in Britain it could be properly regulated and controlled to the point where there is no possibility of people being ‘coerced’ into death – it would be better to have some rules, in this case, than none at all.
And surely, as human beings who can think and act for ourselves, we should be able to decide when and how we die. It comes down to human rights – should we be granted the freedom to make these decisions, and are we responsible enough? If implemented properly, euthanasia could be a blessing for the terminally ill, a chance to end thier life with the full support of the law. But if euthanasia was legalised, how long before the system is abused and euthanasia was no longer just voluntary, but involuntary too? How long before families with a burdensome relative begin putting grandpa’s name down? - ‘He’s too ill to make the decision for himself’. The government might start underhand tactics to control the population in an attempt to save money and resources, culling people who can no longer provide a service to society.
And It’s also difficult to decipher at what point murder turns into ‘assisted suicide’ or vice versa? The physical act of killing results in death regardless of the method; how can we decide what the intent of the ‘killer’ was? This is one of the fundamental problems of euthanasia, and many argue that if implemented in Britain, the boundaries between murder and controlled death would be blurred to such an extent that in many cases it would be impossible to determine which is which. Would euthanasia become accepted as the norm, creating a situation where life becomes devalued? Imagine grandma decided to retire from work to enjoy the last few years of her life in peace, and the next day, she disappeared, taken by the government and disposed of. This could be the reality of legalising euthanasia – history shows us when humans have power, they abuse it.
For advice on this or any other issue see the list of local services in the directory on p27
A new and exciting service is being developed that will create opportunities and activities for young people between the age of 13-19 who live in Haringey. We aim to engage young people through various activities and by providing information, advice, and support to help them to progress towards their goals. Right now young people are being recruited in Haringey to deliver this service to you. Watch out for this team of young people close to your age who are aware of the situations facing the youth of Haringey. They will be supporting you to find advice on what your next step could be as well as providing fun and challenging activities to take part in.
For details call 14
0208 493 1004
gallery Image by Victoria Opyrchal: Forest.
Medium used: Computer generated image
Send your artwork to: The Bigger Shoe Box, Muswell Hill Centre, Hillfield Park N10 3QJ Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Get flocked! baah
Aoife Kurta says if you can’t stand the Heat, stay out of the kitchen. Thursday is Heat day. I go to my newsagents, I hand over £1.65, I take my copy of ‘this week’s hottest celebrity news’ and I read it, cover to cover. I’m told who I think is beautiful; what I should be wearing; the shoes I can’t live without; who I love; who I hate; the next miracle diet; who’s too fat and who’s too thin. I’m buying into a fairytale. I can look like her! I can steal her style! I can be as skinny as she is! I know it’s not £1.65 well spent. I could have got Starbucks on my way home. I could have bought that homeless man lunch. I could have given that girl, who lost her Oyster card, her bus fare. Instead, I’m buying into a fairytale. I can have legs like hers! I can be her! And that’s what I want, Isn’t it? Don’t I want my life to be like that? Don’t I want to be a perfect, beautiful, stunning, amazing, fake, plastic, photocopied clone? I know I’m not alone in this. According to independent verifiers, ABC, Heat has a readership of 416,000. And I know when I bring my copy into school people are desperate to read it after me. Our society is celebrity obsessed. There is no escape. Everywhere we turn there are red carpet gatherings, premières and Alist parties. Turn on your telly now and
ba it’s guaranteed there will be something on about celebrities. Any magazine, any newspaper will be covering them in someway. We can’t run. We can’t hide. If you can’t beat ‘em...
thin celebrities “Stick influence teenagers ”
But this obsession with celebrities is harmful to both the celebrities and us. Every disastrous outfit, every unfortunate facial expression, every awkward pose is pounced upon. Every item of clothing, every action, every movement, is analysed. The media exploits our celebobsessed culture, our desperation to know every single detail of the lives these people lead. In many of the issues, the front cover stories feature women deemed ‘scarily thin’. While it’s admirable that celebs aren’t praised for losing so much weight, by continuing to give celebrities column inches for losing inches means the epidemic of skinny celebrities will
aahbaah never disappear.
Any publicity is good publicity so they say. If celebs have to get in the media to broaden their public appeal, most will do whatever it takes. It only costs them their breakfast, lunch and dinner to get that double page spread. Is it a surprise that so many binge diet? It makes business sense.
Stick thin celebrities influence teenagers - we think ‘this is what we have to look like. This is beauty. This is what I need to be.’ If on every page, a twiglet celebrity is shown, even if the accompanying article says they should put on weight, it still makes us think that this is what people look like. This is what everyone looks like. So why don’t I? This leads to unhealthy crash diets. Not eating enough and eventually eating disorders. It isn’t Heat’s fault. The magazine gets bought, and it gets read. We can’t expect these magazines to stop printing, just because some people think they are setting us a bad example.
Go to any newsagents and there are shelves and shelves of the same type of magazines. They make money. They are successful. We could boycott Heat. We could refuse to hand over the £1.65. We could forget about celebrities. Miracle diets. Who’s sleeping with whom. We could save ourselves from our celebrityobsessed world with a tiny amount of self-control. But... What would I do with my Thursdays? How would I know what to think and to do? How to act? Who would control me? Realistically, I’m not going to stop reading these magazines. I don’t think I can. It’s an addiction! There should be self-help groups. Patches. Gum. Hypnotism. And we can sit in circles and shamefully admit in hushed voices “... I read Heat. It’s delivered to my door weekly... heatworld. com is my homepage...”
For advice on this or any other issue see the list of local services in the directory on p27
Horoscope By Elliot Scott-Faulkner, Lara Lindo, Joey Leskin
Sep. 23 - Oct. 23
\ are the best person in the world both living and dead. Keep everything the same, You and you will become very rich and successful.
Oct. 24 - Nov. 22
Very soon you will meet a tall, dark stranger. He will try to pelt you with raisins. He will succeed. There’s literally nothing you can do about this. I would apologise but it’s the planets you’ve got to blame.
Nov. 23 - Dec. 21
Your parents are always wrong. Fight every decision to the end. Don’t let them get away with any of their crafty schemes – they are only in this to make your life a misery.
Dec. 22 - Jan. 19
Say ‘yes’ to everything and you will be rewarded. You would also do well to avoid telemarketers, beggars and Camden Town.
Jan. 20 - Feb. 18
Feb. 19 - Mar. 20
Mar. 21 - Apr. 20
Cut back on the mozzarella. It may be delicious, but Gorgonzola will lead to a much happier life. It’s the texture more than anything
Look across the icy plain to discover your destiny. If there isn’t an icy plain to hand, just find the nearest frosted heath, although since it’s not winter you might be better off visiting Ally Pally ice rink and skate while you discover your destiny.
Stay off the energy drinks. They’ll ruin your life. Milk, however, won’t give you any energy, so drink that instead.
Apr. 21 - May 22
You may feel someone is stalking you. You’re right. In fact, you might want to slowly turn around and look behind you. RIGHT NOW.
May 23 - Jun. 23
Treat your eyes right - you don’t want them to go googly. Having said this, Google seems to be taking over the world so perhaps you do want your eyes to go googly seeing as everything else is.
Jun. 24 - Jul. 23
Jul. 24 - Aug. 23 A rat that gnaws at a cat’s tail invites destruction. A human who gnaws at a cat’s tail obviously isn’t being fed very well. If this is the case for you then invest in some more lunch.
Aug. 24 - Sep. 22
The cake is a lie. It’s not really your birthday; the world is just having you on. Everything that everyone has ever told you is a lie, including your age. No wonder your school friends call you Silver Fox.
DEBATIN’ the issue 4YP Nurse mobile is: 07943817289 4YP Plus Contraception and Sexual Health Clinic •Women Only Clinic - for under 20’s •A Confidential Walk in Service Thursdays | 3:30pm-6:30pm Lordship Lane Primary Care Health Centre 239 Lordship Lane, London N17 6AA
4YP clinic at St Ann’s is a walk-in service every Tuesday between 2pm and 4.30pm at St Ann’s Sexual Health Centre St Ann’s Hospital, St Ann’s Road, Tottenham, London N15 3TH Tel. 0208 442 6605/6536
Teenage Pregnancy and Parenthood Team – Call Jan on 07817 164 4733 or Margaret on 07971 309 513
Joey Leskin on why is it’s great to masturbate... A comedian once said, “We have reason to believe that man first walked upright to free his hands for masturbation.” So it’s fair to say that masturbating is very common, perhaps more than most of like to admit. When most people say that they don’t do it, they’re probably lying, Dr. Harold Litten, “The Joy of Solo Sex” reckoned that 99% of human beings ‘knock one out’. It’s no big thing, it’s blowin’ your load, jackin’ the beanstalk, bein’ your own best friend, polishin’ your pearl, flickin’ the bean or rubbin’ the nubbin’ (and there are never any g’s involved, ever, which make for happier words I reckon). The fact is: masturbation is natural, legal and most importantly, safe. At a certain time in our lives, our swinging, irresponsible, party animal hormones lead to something called puberty. We start developing new feelings, having desires to do different things, and our bodies start changing although you probably already know this from that solitary biology lesson where everyone pays attention. We’ve all had the extreme pleasure of a teacher getting to the part in the curriculum regarding sex, stumbling and staggering over some of the finer terminology and eventually giving up under a chorus of laughter and crude sexual references. One aspect of puberty is the need, and ability, to masturbate. New sex and relationships website www.ruthinking. co.uk states, “masturbation is touching or stimulating your own or someone else’s genitals for sexual pleasure. Masturbation is a natural and normal way of exploring your own body.” Males learn almost immediately that masturbation is a natural thing and many are quite open about it, especially with friends. It could almost be considered an everyday thing, like say, using a cash machine, and after all, both involve getting something out. However, since boys are known to supposedly do it more than girls, female masturbation is only spoken of in whispers as if it were somehow inappropriate. But why is it that females
can’t be open about ‘enjoying themselves’ in the same way that males can? The negative notion of girls masturbating must be corrected, for male and female masturbation are equally instinctive and valid alternatives to actual sexual intercourse. Many girls think that it’s ‘different for boys’ as it’s ‘more natural’ for them to do it’. When was it decided that, in the privacy of your own room that girls shouldn’t explore their own bodies simply because they’ve got boobs and a vagina and boys have a penis? If anything they need more time to masturbate! It’s equal opportunities we’re talking about here people.
“Masturbation is normal” It is something to do alone, in private, or to share with a loved one. A ‘handjob’ or ‘fingering’ is a safe type of sex, and can often produce pleasure equal to or even exceeding that from intercourse. But it is interesting to note that ‘fingering’ is socially acceptable and even expected, yet a girl fingering herself is not, and it is therefore obvious that this shouldn’t be the case.
Many myths exist regarding masturbation, which have developed and mutated like Chinese whispers and none of which are true. Masturbation does not affect fertility for either boys or girls; boys can’t run out of sperm; you can’t go blind, grow hair on your palms or give you spots; and most of all, you cannot get an STI – in fact, the contrary, for masturbation is the safest sex of all. If you don’t masturbate, and aren’t lying, then start right away. It’s great. For advice and guidance on any issues relating to sex and relationships, sexual health, and your body, see contact information opposite or visit www.ruthinking. co.uk. All services are free and confidential and avaliable to young people. You can also visit your local GP who will have information and advice on hand.
y n o A
By Eliot Scott-Faulkner and Lara Lindo Illustrations by Selina Tucker
Help! My breakfast has started talking to me and sometimes I see faces in my beans. I thought I was going crazy, but my breakfast tells me this is normal. When I eat it I get terrible indigestion and I’m scared I might be hurting the bean-men. However, I am a very hungry person and I can’t resist the little nuggets of beany goodness. My favourite bean-man is called Mr Jelly, and he follows me at school. All my friends have abandoned me because they think I’m insane. Also, my feet smell. Please help.
Every day on the way to school I meet a man called Mr Larry Tark. He’s dressed in a cow suit. He always tries to make me buy his scented tissues. When I refuse he gets upset. I’m going broke because his tissues are very expensive, but I don’t want to hurt his feelings or make him angry. How do I politely refuse his luxurious, soft and wonderfully scented merchandise? Try walking a different way to school or if possible get your mum or dad to drive you. This guy could be some kind of pervert and you would be playing into his hands. Phone the police if you feel things are getting out of control.
Well, I think you should skip breakfast for a while and see if your hallucinations disappear, if not, attend a psychiatrist - your mind needs to be sorted. As for your feet, change your socks and wash them day and night with shower gel you may get your friends back and maybe more. Do you like S’getti Oops? Dere alriite, innit.
I know it sounds weird but my mum has been paying more attention to my little kitten, Little Man, than me. She keeps making a fuss of him and totally ignores me. I feel I should run away from home and see whether she loves me or not. What do you think I should do? You shouldn’t run away from home. But she shouldn’t treat you like that. If you look around long enough you can probably find an abandoned wardrobe to set up camp in. I think someone is trying to assassinate me. Yesterday my house was blown up, and I was shot at this morning. Fortunately, I happened to be wearing full body armour, phew. Someone took my little buddy, Mr Fluffy, hostage and they’re demanding I meet them to get him back. I’m scared, confused and lost in this maze of destruction and brutality. The loss of Mr Fluffy has ripped my heart from my chest, all I want is for the people to go away and leave Mr Fluffy and me to live our lives. I miss his fuzzy little face. Never give up the fight to save him. Your life together will bring happiness and people will try and take that from you. Good things are worth fighting. Hold on to the fuzzy tinkle times.
Everyone’s got problems, so for some serious advice, see the Directory on page 27 for a list of support services.
psycho... path to recovery
Victoria Opyrchal describes her experiences of overcoming psychosis... Imagine that you have voices in your mind that threatened you, haunted you and came after you. That’s where I was a year ago. I had psychosis. Psychosis is a common mental health problem that can seriously affect the way you think and feel. It happens to different people in different ways. Psychosis to me was one of the weirdest and hardest experiences ever; in fact strange things were going on around me while I was unwell. It’s like facing an uncertain reality where nothing makes sense. It’s very strange, especially when you lose control over your actions. I lost control during year 9. I don’t really know what triggered the illness. It just happened out of the blue.
during a “ Moving blackout is one of the worst things that could happen during psychosis.
I think it was connected with being bullied at school by this kid. I was scared. Suddenly everything went dark. Blackness crept up my spine, went through my head and billowed inside my eyes. Then I lost stability and blacked out. Without knowing what I was doing I shouted at the kid and he ran off screaming. I didn’t know what I said though. I couldn’t hear or see what I was doing. These blackouts happened a few more times. My inner feelings were taking over my actions. It was traumatic, like an unknown place within your mind with one light that shines through the darkness. I felt confused about reality, and not only that the ‘black outs’ were freaky. I couldn’t see what I was doing. It was just completely black. I only knew that I was moving. It’s hard to understand how it happened like that. Psychosis is full of chaos. The illness could go anywhere, from being crazy and confused to being sick and delusional.
I started seeing things I hadn’t seen before; strange characters, thoughts and delusional beliefs. It was hard to get rid of the belief system, especially with everything else going on around. It was like a fantasy world, hearing voices in my mind haunting me about the past. A person with psychosis may see the world completely out of the blue to someone that is ‘normal’. Although ‘normal’ isn’t really there for some people... everyone’s crazy these days! The causes of psychosis could be genetic or could come from real-life stresses, like family problems. It’s not your fault. According to Young Minds, someone with a close relative (a parent or a brother or sister) who has psychosis has a one in ten chance of getting the problem themselves. It’s a difficult mental illness to deal with but I got through it. I’m on medication and I had therapy at the hospital for a while. Now I’m working with Exposure and I’m going to succeed in life with my graphic design course. If you have a similar condition and hear voices in your head I would suggest listening to music. Having voices can be one of the reasons for becoming mentally ill. Trust me, you don’t want to end up inside a chaotic fantasy world on the brink of becoming ill with psychosis. I interviewed a psychiatric nurse and found out that you can contact the Early Intervention Psychosis, their team number is 0208 365 1375. They should be able to help you get through this illness. Also talk to your parents and contact your GP. Psychosis can be treated using medication and therapy. It was a frightening experience for me while it happened and it has taken me a long time to recover.
For advice on this or any other issue see the list of local services in the directory on p27
Neverending battle By Gisela dos Santos
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DRUGS & ALCOHOL
For young people with drug or alcohol issues
Shelter’s free housing advice line
Muswell Hill Area Youth Project Muswell Hill Centre, Muswell Hill 020 8883 5855 Bruce Grove Area Youth Project 10 Bruce Grove, Tottenham 020 3224 1089 Wood Green Area Youth Project White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre 020 8489 8942 Broadwater Youth Club Structured sport-based programme Broadwater Community Centre, Tottenham 07870 15 7612 Triangle Twilight Bridge Club Structured youth project 93 St Ann’s Road, Tottenham 020 8802 1955 SEXUAL HEALTH 4YP Haringey
0808 800 4444
40 Bromley Road, Tottenham 020 8493 8525
Duke of Edinburgh’s Award
For the families of people with drug or alcohol issues
Programme of personal development
0800 38905257 www.in-volve.org.uk
020 8826 9393
National volunteering programme
Hearthstone For people experiencing domestic violence 10 Commerce Road, Wood Green 020 888 5362 MENTAL HEALTH Antenna For black African and African-Caribbean young people 9 Bruce Grove, Tottenham 020 8365 9537 www.antennaoutreach.co.uk Haringey Young People’s Counselling Service Advice and support for young people
BTCV Millennium volunteers
www2.btcv.org.uk EMPLOYMENT & TRAINING e2e Employment scheme 122-124 High Road, Wood Green 020 8889 0022 KIS Training Helping young people into employment, education & enterprise 1 Ashley Road, Tottenham Hale 020 8275 4230 Harington Scheme Preparing young people with learning difficulties or disabilities for work
Young people’s sexual health services including dedicated clinic, drop-in sessions and the 4YP bus
White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre 020 8489 8946 Host
55a Cholmeley Park, Highgate www.harington.org.uk
0800 1613 715 www.4yp.co.uk
General mental health care
312 High Road, Tottenham 020 8885 8160
One-stop shop for young people
Young Mums To Be Course in Tottenham for teenage mums
Revolving Doors Agency
1 Ashley Road, Tottenham Hale 020 8275 4230 Outzone Confidential information and support for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people www.outzone.org DISABILITIES Markfield Project
Tackling the link between mental health and crime
2nd Floor, Wood Green Library 020 8881 7050 www.thejunctionharingey. co.uk
Tottenham Town Hall 07986 708 461 07779 098 269 www.revolving-doors.co.uk Victim Support Haringey Working for victims of crime 020 8888 9878 www.vslondon.org
Inclusive services for disabled and non-disabled young people
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The views expressed in Exposure do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher. (c) 2008. All rights reserved. ISSN 1362-8585