Dear Simon

[Context: https://www.simonoxfphys.com/blog/2019/11/4/im-not-okay ]

Dear Simon,

I’ve read through this piece you published multiple times since you published it. Each time I read it, I resolved further to write out a response. I drafted this a couple of times before posting it, but kept deleting my thoughts because I wasn’t sure what the right words were. I’m not checking this from this point forward, so I’m literally communicating to you everything in my head right now.

I discovered you in Grade 11, when I was making a decision about whether to apply to the University of Oxford, or the University of Cambridge to study Law. I watched your Day in the Life video, and then discovered Oxvlog. Ultimately I chose to apply to Oxford for other reasons, but comparing Jake Wright’s videos to yours gave me a lot of insight about life at these Universities. I’m very grateful for that series. I then continued to watch your videos from that point onward, and when you did your PhD series, I loved it – as someone aspiring toward that path, I was so in awe of did so much. I love it now as well and I watch some of your videos when I need a pick-me-up. Most of your science education and Kerbal space program videos have been enjoyable because I am a science geek studying Law, but basically, I’m a fan.

Which is why reading your letter of sorts really pained me. Its difficult to imagine and contemplate the true extent of the kind of struggle you’re experiencing. I can only empathise with how difficult it must have been for you to take the decision to write about it publicly, but I’m so grateful that you did that. For me, it does two things. As a fan of yours, it makes me more aware of the kind of stuff going on in your head – which is something we’ve always looked forward to in your vlogs. More crucially though, it shed perspective on mental health and the conversation around that – and the manner in which it needs to take place. There has been an uptick in the ease with which society is able to have conversations about mental health issues, but society holds a lamp to individuals who have following, and the fact that you’ve initiated that conversation and that process for yourself, I’m sure, will change the way several people who have followed your work and your life on the internet, look at mental health.

I do hope all the effort you put on your mental health bears fruit, insofar as it helps you feel better. That’s all I wanted to say, to be frank. I’m not very sure why I wrote this full blogpost, but I guess I just wanted to say, take care.

If you need something, you should know that there are several people you can turn to who want to help you out. You know whom to turn to, but should you decide to utilize the internet or any social media to ask for help – there are several people your videos and material have helped. I’m one of them. And I’d be glad to return the favour.

Lastly, pixelgirl is amazing.

I know I shall await work output when work output comes, but I look forward to hearing that you’re doing better one day.

Everything is temporary, so this too, shall pass. I’m glad you’re seeking help.

Regards,

A fan.

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