by Paxton Roth
LAST month, this young mum spent time in hospital after her battle with depression came to a head.
27-year-old Leah Bennett's second son is now 15 months old and it was during her pregnancy that she first noticed she wasn't feeling like herself.
"I was treated with anti-depressants during my pregnancy but it kind of just masked the feelings - they started to wear off and I fell back into that big hole,” Leah said.
"Last month I spent 10 days in hospital after pretty intruding suicidal thoughts - I'm still being treated for depression now but the suicidal thoughts have gone.”
It was from her hospital bed that Leah came up with the idea to run an online auction to raise funds for beyondblue after the organisation helped her through some of her darkest times.
"I went to a doctor and I tried to explain that I'm not feeling great and he said 'I don't see any reason for it' and made me go and have blood tests to see if I was on drugs or alcohol - that was a humiliating experience,” she said.
"I've got a husband and my family and I thought 'how do people do this without that support?'.
"I don't think any one is immune to it, it doesn't matter what your situation is, it can happen to anyone.”
Beyondblue promotes good mental health, tackles stigma and discrimination, and provides support and information on anxiety, depression and suicide.
With their help, Leah was connected with a doctor who worked with her to understand and manage her mental health.
"I know it feels like you're a burden and everybody would be better if you weren't here, but the burden we place on ourself is not accurate, it's the depression speaking to you.”
She spent her days in hospital emailing businesses asking if they could help with the auction, and thanks to their generosity Leah has a variety of prizes to auction off weekly via Facebook, with all proceeds donated to beyondblue.
The auction will start on June 29 and run until November 29.
To participate or donate a prize, search 'beyondblue online auction' on Facebook.