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‘It’s like you’re screaming in the inside’ - Norwich band lead singer opens up about mental health single

PUBLISHED: 06:00 06 May 2020 | UPDATED: 11:13 06 May 2020

Millie Manders and the Shutup have released Silent Scream, a track about mental health. Picture:  Zöe De Boehmler

Millie Manders and the Shutup have released Silent Scream, a track about mental health. Picture: Zöe De Boehmler

Archant

The lead singer of a Norwich band reached a critical point earlier this year when she was signed off work for a month due to mental health problems.

Millie Manders and the Shutup, based in Norwich, formed in 2014 and will release their debut album later in the year. Picture:  Zöe De BoehmlerMillie Manders and the Shutup, based in Norwich, formed in 2014 and will release their debut album later in the year. Picture: Zöe De Boehmler

It was the first time Millie Manders, of Millie Manders and The Shutup, who has struggled with anxiety and depression on and off for years, had reached out for help.

“I had to get out of it.” said Ms Manders, who is also a teacher at Access to Music in Norwich.

She said: “When I get really bad anxiety I get chest pains and my ribs constrict and when I am really low it feels like the light has been sucked out of me and the world. I have a voice in my head which says terrible things and you can’t sleep. It just constantly tears you down.”

Her experiences with mental health, which she describes as like “screaming in the inside”, are detailed in a new single Silent Screams, which was written after a suicidal dream.

Ms Manders said: “I find it really difficult when you’re in the depths of it to be outspoken about it. You want someone to help you but it is like being in a dark box and words are swirling around but falling flat. I feel guilty about not being able to function. People don’t realise how much it is a sickness. Everything feels frozen.”

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The powerful track seeks to capture the feeling of desperately not knowing how to reach out and to raise awareness around mental health.

Ms Manders hopes, above all, it will show people who are feeling a similar way they are not alone – and to encourage them to seek help.

She added: “Remember there are lots of other people who have been there and will stand by you while you are going through it. I hope the song will help other people to feel OK.”

“For me songwriting is a form of therapy, and not just for mental health, but for anything I’m angry at or bad relationships. It’s just important to use your voice, people will listen, in whatever way you want.”

The band donated £5 from each limited edition t-shirt and vest for the single, which sold out in one week, to charities Papyrus and Mind.

If you are struggling with mental health contact the Samaritans free helpline on 116 123.

Silent Screams is available at www.millie-manders.com


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