Emma Bramwell's 30 for 30 - in memory of Adam Bramwell

On 12th April 2016 my brother, Adam Bramwell, tragically took his own life after an ongoing battle with his mental health. He was just 27 at the time.

In the 12 months leading up to what would have been Adam's 30th, I will aim to run in 30 races to raise money for 3 mental health charities that are working endlessly to break the stigma and support those suffering with their mental health, and also help those that have lost loved ones to suicide.

The 30 races will be of varying distances and I will be joined on individual races by friends that may also share this link to help reach the fundraising target and raise awareness. I will also be encouraging anyone who wants to raise awareness for mental health to get involved in any races and also share their stories.

You can follow the 30 for 30 blog here: 30for30.blog - to keep track of progress on what races have been completed, and hopefully read stories from those that are getting involved.

Together, we will be raising money and awareness for:

MIND: One of the UK’s leading mental health charities. Mind provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. They campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding.

Mental Health Research UK: Established in 2008 as the UK’s first charity dedicated to funding research into mental illness, Mental Health Research UK strive to develop better treatments with fewer side-effects.

SOBS (Survivors Of Bereavement By Suicide): SOBS exists to meet the needs and break the isolation of those bereaved by the suicide of a close relative or friend. SOBS Manchester has significantly helped my Mum since losing Adam.

My 30 for 30 campaign won’t bring Adam back, but I want to do something significant in his memory, as not making it to 30 under such tragic circumstances is something that needs addressing.

If you want to get involved in any runs, contact me directly or use the contact form on the 30 for 30 blog.

So…I ended up celebrating one of my last precious weekend lie-ins of the next 12months by getting up and…going on a 6mile run(?!)… I have now learned that if I am going to have half a chance of completing this challenge and actually enjoying it, then I shouldn’t drink a bottle of wine and go to bed at 1am the night before a big race.
With just under 1 week to go until what would have been Adam’s 29th birthday, and the day of race number 1, here is a short blog and a little bit more information on why I have chosen to run for Mental Health Research UK.

This is a tricky subject to write about, as I really don’t want to say the wrong thing or come across as an expert on the topic – because let’s face it, I’m not. I am just writing through my own thoughts, opinions and experiences.

Mental Health Research UK is a charity I came across whilst searching for organisations that study the science behind mental health – to better understand the causes and help develop treatments. Something I feel is really important.

When choosing the 3 charities, I knew I wanted to cover the 3 aspects where support is needed:

SOBS – to support those who are bereaved by suicide.
MIND – to empower those living with mental health problems and encourage them to speak out
MENTAL HEALTH RESEARCH UK – to develop better treatments with fewer side-effects
It was only once Adam had passed away that I found out that medication used to treat depression and anxiety can have side-effects which include suicidal thoughts. Adam was taking one of these. I won’t name the medication as I know that with any of these drugs, where there are few that suffer side-effects, there are far more lives that have been saved and people who have been helped. I don’t want to send anyone taking medication into a frenzy and I 100% don’t want to discourage anyone from visiting their GP or taking medication. I just want people to be aware.

Though I cannot be certain that Adam’s suicidal thoughts were caused or magnified due to side-effects, I will always wonder.

It was hard to find out that something that is meant to help you, can ultimately make the problem worse…

I am a big believer in going to counselling, talking to friends or visiting your GP if you are struggling with your mental health, after all – the brain/mind is only another complex part of the body that occasionally needs a health check. It is also another part of your body that requires further research. There are many well known charities that are dedicated to conducting research into killer diseases, and quite rightly so. But as suicide still stands as the most common cause of death for men aged 20-49 years in England and Wales, I think we should all hear more about Mental Health Research UK and support their mission to develop better treatments.

Told you it was a short blog…

Mental Health Research UK will receive 35% of the overall 30for30 fundraising – Visit fundraising page >>