Valen (Myles) Cook
  • Male
  • Grays, Essex
  • United Kingdom
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What brings you to NatCAN?
A friend recommended NatCAN

About me...

Published(!) poet and Your Thurrock blog columnist.  I'm also a card carrying miserable, cynical, pessimistic atheist.  I'm also a delusional, anti-social meglomaniac with an evil plan for world domination!

WARNING: The following contains spoilers, is way too long, has too much information and has the unfortunate characteristic of being totally true!

I tend to be very blunt and almost pathologically honest which doesn’t endear me to many people but I’ve reached a point in my life where I’m not inclined to put an act on just to please others.  I am me and that’ll have to be good enough.

I’m almost 41 years old and have a complicated relationship with my wife of eleven years.  I have only had one relationship in my life, having been rejected several times before that.  I suffer with depression and have done so for almost 34 years now.  My sense of humour tends towards dark surrealism that reflects my melancholic, eccentric nature.

My interests include a wide range of topics from psychology and philosophy to foreign films and the paranormal and all points in between.  I have a keen interest in mental health awareness due to my own affliction and am currently organising an event on that subject although it has run into trouble somewhat in recent days.

Although I am unlucky in love, I am a romantic at heart and seem pre-programmed with the desire to be in a relationship.  I am, however, a shy and socially awkward man and consider myself to be an emotional cripple who just wants to be loved.  I’m a difficult person to live with being rather pessimistic and melancholic but I can be fun to be with as well and am much sought after as a shoulder to cry on so it’s a case of swings and roundabouts being friends with me.

I write poetry as an outlet for my creativity and emotional turmoil and have had three poems published in a free-to-download magazine available from the Survivors Poetry website.  I also have a blog column on Your Thurrock, a local news website.

I am not in work at the moment but am doing a lot of voluntary work around mental health issues.

My biggest regret is not having any children.  I’ve always wanted at least one but, as I have a rule about not having children after I hit forty, I don’t suppose I’ll ever get the chance.  It’s not like I’m going to get any offers with a personality as winning as mine!  lol

I have a cat called Merlin who I’m pretty sure is pure evil incarnate but I’m still waiting for confirmation.

I'm on Facebook (valen1971) and Twitter (@valen1971).  I also have a personal blog on Blogger ( and a personal website at

Valen (Myles) Cook's Blog

A new future for mental health awareness and involvement

One of the functions of The Enlightenment Project is to help build mental health awareness.  The way I hope this can be achieved is by setting up a service user-led organisation, in conjunction with a service user-led consultancy and training company called ARW, like the one currently in operation in Essex but with a much wider, long term focus.  The proposed aims of the new organisation would be:

  • Set up and support self-help groups (all we would ask in return is the…

Posted on May 15, 2012 at 10:51

The Dangers of Community Activism

Community activism is a truly wonderful thing to get involved in but there is a certain risk you run when you undertake such ‘work’.  I am one of the people who know this only too well, having had my activism on the subject on mental health blow up spectacularly in my face.

It was not exactly the plan, when I organised a depression awareness event at my local adult college where I am on the Board of Governors, for my life to be adversely affected by doing so; it just happened that…


Posted on May 9, 2012 at 13:39 — 1 Comment

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At 7:33 on May 9, 2012, joe taylor said…

Hi Myles - where is the photo taken?  Are you a fisherman?

At 15:35 on May 8, 2012, Mark Dale said…

Hi Myles great to see you on NatCAN


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