A Littlehampton musician has penned a song to encourage people struggling with mental health problems to speak out.
Nino Vydeenaden’s song It’s Okay Not to be Okay has been viewed thousands of times online and gone global, being viewed as far away as Australia and the United States.
The 24-year-old, of Harwood Road, said experiences of those he knew, as well as tragic cases of people taking their own lives, had inspired the track.
“I know men in particular struggle to speak up because they think it’s weak or have a lack of confidence.
“Some of then feel like it’s their only option to take their own lives.
“It’s something I’m quite serious about, so I wanted to talk about it.”
Nino’s song was viewed more than 9,000 times and had been shared by scores of people.
The recording was filmed in Ford and features Nino playing the guitar.
He said he came up with the idea and the lyrics while working at Tesco.
Among the inspirations was the personal experience of someone he knew, who Nino said had faced online abuse from people while at school.
He said: “They spread needless hate, making horrible comments. This made them feel down and depressed and they did not want to go to school as a result.
“It’s not just what’s happening around us – it’s a personal matter, too.”
Nino spoke of his concerns about the wider impact social media can have on mental health.
“Young people are glued to their phones,” he said.
“You get these celebs who only post their best photos that are edited and air-brushed and young girls then think they have to conform. It’s another world, really.”
Nino said he hoped the song would lead to more people talking about mental health issues. Visit his Facebook page, Nino-v, for more of his work.
“I want people to know they are not a burden and I am sure their families and friends would rather they spoke about it,” he said.
“There’s a lot of people they can talk to where they can get help and I want people to reach out and tell people how they feel.”
If you are affected by issues in this story, contact Samaritans for confidential support on 116 123.
Reporting by James Chesson