Stress-related mental health problems affect one in five primary care workers. Four in five have trouble sleeping. These are the realities of working in today’s NHS, according to mental health research by Mind, and they form the backdrop to Monologues of a Tired Nurse.
Tell Me Anything delivers a refreshing and profound take on the enduring discourse surrounding mental illness. The narrative focuses on performer David Ralfe and flashes back to his relationship with Kate, his girlfriend at 15 years old. Diagnosed as atypically anorexic Kate is physically absent from the story, as we are led to believe she and many like her by starving themselves try to become physically absent from reality.
Insomnia is a common problem – the NHS estimates that one in three people in the UK experience it regularly – and on the surface Millican-Slater's stories evoke the banal: one features a couple in a supermarket; another, a couple disturbed by the insistent loud music played by their neighbours after hours.