Big White Wall is passionate about making a difference. We want to provide guidance and resources to make this experience easy and helpful. Please explore our FAQs below so that you can make the Wall your own.

Big White Wall, bigwhitewall.com, is a digital mental health support service which is available online, 24/7, and is completely anonymous so you can express yourself freely and openly. Professionally trained Wall Guides monitor the community to ensure the safety and anonymity of all members. In addition to BWW’s online community, you will have access to a wealth of useful information and can work through tailored self-help programmes covering topics such as anxiety, sleep, weight management, depression and many more.

Big White Wall offers a range of activities that allow you to work through what's troubling you.

Be anonymous

Access an anonymous community of support available from members 24/7.

A screenshot showing new members

Share Your Issues

Join a Talkabout alongside fellow members to share and discuss what's on your mind, gain support and advice. You can do this with the whole community or form your own groups or one to one chats.

A screenshot showing talkabouts

Assess yourself

Take Assessments to help you understand more about yourself.

A screenshot showing tests you can take

Creative Expression

Make a Brick to express yourself and your feelings creatively through drawing or by uploading your own images.

How to create a brick

Self Improvement

Find lots of information in Useful Stuff which helps you understand more about how you are feeling, set goals and track your progress.

A screenshot showing suggested Useful stuff

Make Friends

Make Friends anonymously so you can give and receive support from others like you.

How to make friends

Take a Course

Join our Guided Support courses with others to learn how to manage everything from depression and anxiety to weight-management and stopping smoking.

Our guided support courses

Anyone who is aged 16 and over.

Big White Wall is freely available through several different means. All service personnel, veterans and their family members can access Big White Wall for free through our partnership with the Ministry of Defense and Help for Heroes. The service is commissioned widely across the UK by the NHS, councils and health insurance providers. You may also be able to freely access Big White Wall through your employer or university. Alternatively, you can choose to take out a monthly subscription for £9.99 per month. The paid subscription does not allow access to our LiveTherapy service.

You can connect with the BWW community wherever and whenever you want from a mobile device simply by visiting our mobile-friendly website at bigwhitewall.com. NB: Our service requires an internet connection and some features, like our Guided Support courses and LiveTherapy, should be used on a desktop computer.

For ease of use you may want to create a shortcut to Big White Wall on your mobile device. Please find step by step instructions below.

iPhone, iPad:

Launch the Safari browser on Apple’s iOS and navigate to the website or web page you want to add to your home screen. Tap the Share button on the browser’s toolbar — that’s the rectangle with an arrow pointing upward. It’s on the bar at the top of the screen on an iPad, and on the bar at the bottom of the screen on an iPhone or iPod Touch. Tap the Add to Home Screen icon in the Share menu.

You’ll be prompted to name the shortcut before tapping the Add button. The shortcut can be dragged around and placed anywhere, including in app folders — just like a normal app icon.

Android:

Launch Chrome for Android and open the website or web page you want to pin to your home screen. Tap the menu button and tap Add to homescreen. You’ll be able to enter a name for the shortcut and then Chrome will add it to your home screen.

The icon will appear on your home screen like any other app shortcut or widget, so you can drag it around and put it wherever you like. Chrome for Android loads the website as a “web app” when you tap the icon, so it will get its own entry in the app switcher and won’t have any browser interface getting in the way.

Anything that is causing people emotional distress, this can include anxiety, stress, feeling low, depression, feeling out of control and trauma to name a few. All of these may be triggered by life events such as the loss of a loved one, relationship breakdowns, employment related issues, financial crisis, sexuality, isolation, alcohol or drug related problems.

We take abuse on our service very seriously. There is a system of watchwords that signal inappropriate behaviour or language use, which are immediately flagged to a Wall Guide.

Secondly, members can report unwanted behaviour through our simple process. Members can click on the 'Report' button on pages of the website to report abuse of the system, this is then escalated to a team member of BWW.

The BWW Community is the main hub of support as individuals share their stories and experiences, engaging in conversations with other members of the community. Our Wall Guides are trained clinicians whose job is to keep our members safe and help them feel they are not alone. They are required to be proactive in responding to BWW members who are in crisis and provide them with support, seek local assistance from their doctor or therapist.

A key requirement of Wall Guides work is to ensure that anonymity of members is maintained and to report any incidence of posts that may assist to reveal the real identity of a member. This requires that all comments, and all images are monitored to ensure that it conforms to BWW House Rules.

Wall Guides are required to model the behaviour that Big White Wall wants members to adopt within the community. This includes being welcoming of new members, exchanging comments that are non-judgemental and respectful as well as encouraging others to express their troubles and provide assurance of a safe space.

Once you've received your member code from your health care provider, employer or other supporting agency you are ready to create your account.

Start by clicking the link in your email confirmation or by clicking the 'Join Us' and entering your code and filling out your information.

Note that as you start your page, the more information you choose to add about yourself, your needs and interests the better we'll be able to tailor your BWW to you.

Big White Wall is anonymous. This allows you the freedom to share honestly and openly. When choosing a username and profile pic (this is the image that will appear with or without your username), make sure that no one will be able to identify you from these. For example, avoid pet names, childhood nicknames or names that you may use on other networks or sites.

Wall Guides may change your username if they feel it may give away your identity. If this happens, you will be notified by an email giving you a link to a private Talkabout with a Wall Guide, where you can ask them to change it to something more memorable.

On joining you are given a default profile picture, a non-identifying image that is assigned to you and often used with your user name.

You can change your profile picture to an image of your choice by uploading an image file or picture from your desktop. To do this, go to My Home Page, and click 'Edit pic', then browse to go to the image you wish to upload from your computer. Alternatively, you can select from several block colours.

Remember that Big White Wall is anonymous and so profile photos should not identify you in any way.

To access the different sections of Big White Wall, click 'Open Menu' on the top left side of every page.

Search for information

For specific advice or support on a certain issue or topic, type one or more keywords in the search box right at the top of the page. A list of related bricks, Talkabouts, and 'Useful Stuff' articles will appear.

Search 'Useful Stuff'

You can search for articles on specific topics by selecting 'Useful Stuff' from the menu on the left side of the page. Here you can browse our information categories on the left by choosing one and clicking on it. You can narrow your search further by clicking on one of the four types of content on the right, depending on whether you are interested in taking an assessment, general information (Understand More), self-help (Moving Forward) or specific self-help exercises (Learn skills).

How do I search for another member?

To find a particular member, select 'Friends' from the menu on the left side of every page, and enter their name in the 'Search friends' box. You can then add the member as a friend or send them a message.

Members you have added as friends and who have accepted your request will display in the 'My Friends' section of your homepage.

The Wall is the heart and soul of the site, where you can view each brick, see the latest and most popular bricks in a slideshow or browse the 'Featured Walls' on a specific topic. To explore the Wall:

  • Click and drag or use the arrows to navigate around the bricks.
  • To zoom in on a brick that catches your eye, click on it once.
  • To find out more details about the brick, pause, then click once again and you will be taken to the brick page, where you can view the creator and comments made on the brick.
  • To go back to the Wall, pause, then double click on the brick.

Or, you can find a blank brick to create yourself.

You can view bricks and create your own by clicking on ‘Bricks’ in the top level menu and clicking the 'Create Brick' button on the top right to open the brick drawing tool. Here you have lots of ways to express what you want to say.

Upload a photo or image of your choice, ensuring that you or others cannot be identified from it.

  • Click on the ‘Image’ tab on the left hand menu and pick the picture you would like to upload.
  • Your picture will now appear on the brick.
  • If you click on the ‘Select’ option you can make your image smaller, larger or move it to wherever you would like on your brick.

Drawing effects

These tools help you to draw words or pictures.

  • Click on the pencil icon under the 'Drawing' on the left hand menu.
  • You can change the colour of the tools and the width of each of them by clicking on the + or - buttons.

Text effects

  • Click on the ‘Type’ option on the left hand menu.
  • You can select your font, size and colour for typing.
  • Type in the text you want in the box that appears. To change the size of the text use the + and under ‘Tool size’.
  • To change the size of the text box, click on the grey triangle at the bottom right of the text box and then drag to the desired size.
  • Double click on the text box and drag to move it around.
  • To rotate your text in the box, select the text box and spin the green arrow.

If you would like to add something new just repeat the above steps, you will be able to delete the layers you no longer want. That way you don't lose all your hard work if you change your mind about something.

You can now save your brick, which will take you to another page with your brick preview. Here you can:

  • Give your brick a name.
  • Type in any text related to the brick. Sometimes it is an explanation of the image, a question and so on. Remember to add topics.
  • Choose to have the brick either 'Public', so your username will be displayed with the brick, or 'Private', so the brick will be posted as 'Anonymous'. When you reply to a comment on a brick that you have created anonymously your reply also comes up as anonymous.
  • Decide whether you want people to comment on the brick or not. The 'Allow Comments' box will allow you to choose by ticking or unticking it.
  • Change the status of your bricks at any time from your account page. For more information on this, go to Your Privacy.
  • If you are running low on time or inspiration, click on the save button so the brick remains on your account page and you can return to it at a later date.

When you have finished, click on 'Post Brick' to add your brick to those already making up the wall. Enjoy!

You can create a brick and gift it to a friend on Big White Wall.

You can choose to create a brick for them or send a blank brick so that person can use it to let us know how they are feeling.

Click on 'Share this Brick' and enter the member name of the person you wish to share it with.

Unless you choose to enter a message, the brick will be gifted completely anonymously.

Your friend will receive a message from Big White Wall saying a friend has created a brick for them.

Have you got issues or concerns that you want to share with others? Talkabouts (TAs) is the place to do this.

Community Talkabout

You can view and join an existing conversation by clicking 'Talkabouts' in the menu on the left, then browsing through ongoing TAs.

Or if none of the existing subjects seem to cover what you want to talk about click on the 'Start Talkabout' button and start your own.

Your subject should indicate what the TA will concentrate on. You can start a TA about a subject specific to your situation if you need objective points of view or just an empathetic ear to listen; for example, "Can anybody suggest coping strategies for anxiety?"

If you add topics to the TA in the 'Topics' bar, members who are interested in similar subjects will be more aware of the new TA.

If you feel that the subject or message might be offensive to other members, please tick "This May be Considered to be Offensive".

When you are satisfied with your TA, simply press the 'Post Talkabout' button and you are all set.

You can stay up to date with Talkabouts you are interested or involved in by opening the TA and clicking 'Watch this'. These will then display in 'My Watched Talkabouts'.

GroupTalkabout (GTA)

To invite only specific members to participate in the TA, click on the 'Make this a Group Talkabout' button which will give you the option to be viewed by invitees only.

Personal Talkabout (PTA)

To start a Personal Talkabout with a friend:

  • Go to the member's profile by searching in 'Friends' and clicking on their name.
  • Click on the 'Send Message' button and the message will be a PTA between you and your friend. PTAs are not viewed by other members, but are still visible to the BWW Team

Find your personal talkabouts by selecting 'Talkabouts' from the menu and clicking on the tab at the top of the page

PersonalTalkabout (PTA) with a Wall Guide (WG)

If you have a non-urgent problem or issue you feel unable to share in the community, you can start a PTA with a WG by clicking 'Ask a Wall Guide' at the top right corner of every page. Find your personal talkabouts by selecting 'Talkabouts' from the menu and clicking on the tab at the top of the page.

Tags or keywords which you add to your bricks and Talkabouts, make it easier for others to find content relevant to them. When others type keywords into the Big White Wall search box, your brick or TA will appear in the search alongside other content with the same tag.

There are several clinical tests to choose from to help you understand how you are feeling. To take an assessment:

Click on 'Assess yourself' on the menu on the top left of the page.

Choose an assessment from the list.

When the assessment opens, select the appropriate level for each item on the list and press the 'Submit' button.

You will then be given a brief explanation of your score. It may suggest that you are showing signs of high stress and that you should contact your provider. Or it may suggest that your stress levels are currently low.

There will be links to further information that can help you understand what you are experiencing.

You will have the option to retake the assessment if you are not satisfied that you selected the correct options.

After you have taken the assessment, you can read the Useful Stuff resources on the same topic, which can help you to understand further, move forward and test out specific self-help skills.

You can go back and look at your results or take the assessment when your mood feels different. To do this, go to 'Assess Yourself' and click on 'My Previous Assessments'.

If you got your code directly from your healthcare professional, employer or university it is important that you start your account by either:

  • clicking on the link in your email for your membership code to be entered automatically
  • clicking on the 'Join Us' link on top of this page and entering your provider member ID or the code that was handed to you on your instruction page.

Note that as you start your page, the more information you choose to add about yourself, your needs and interests the better we'll be able to tailor your BWW to you.

• What is Guided Support?

Guided Support is a collection of structured online courses available on Big White Wall. These courses last from 2-6 weeks. When you join a course, you receive an introduction which includes the number of weeks the course will last, the number of sessions per week, and what you can expect to see and do in the course. Each session contains general education about a specific topic or a self-reflection exercise. In most sessions, you will also learn a helpful skill. Each session ends with an activity using the information and skills learned in the day’s session.

Guided Support courses run regularly. If you miss one, you can join it the next time it starts.

• How can I join a Guided Support course?

You can choose a course by going to the Guided Support section of Big White Wall, available from your homepage. The Guided Support section will include all current and upcoming courses. Then, just choose the one you’d like to join.

Once the course starts, you will receive a message prompting you to log in to complete the first activity, with a weekly prompt to complete your activities until the course ends.

• Can I take more than one course at a time?

There is no limit on the number of Guided Support courses you can join, but we recommend waiting until you have completed one before starting another.

• How do I know that Guided Support courses work?

Guided Support courses are based on the most current clinical evidence that has been shown to help people cope with difficult issues or symptoms. Courses are designed to improve your coping skills and promote healthy behaviours. Taking the course with others has been shown to motivate members to complete the courses.

• Can I leave a Guided Support course if I want to?

You’re in control of what you do on Big White Wall. You can complete the activities at any time during the week. If you don’t like the course you don’t have to complete it. However, to get the full benefit, it is always best to try to complete it if you can. Some of the skills you learn may not seem helpful now, but may help you with issues that come up later.

• How can I get help with Guided Support or ask question?

Ask a Wall Guide if you have any questions about Guided Support.

You can talk to a Wall Guide at any time by clicking 'Ask a Wall Guide' on the top right of every page. You can also select 'Ask a Wall Guide' from the menu on the left side of every page. This will open a personal Talkabout between you and the Wall Guide.

To change your password:

Click on 'Account'.

Type in the current password, new password and confirm new password

Change time zone:

You can change your time zone and other personal data in 'Account'.

Change my mood:

Go to the homepage

Click on 'Change Mood' and choose one of the mood buttons.

To avoid upsetting content:

If you want to filter content to remove anything that might be deemed upsetting or offensive go to 'Account' and tick the 'Safe Filter' box.

If you have other questions or concerns, get in touch with us directly at theteam@bigwhitewall.com.