The 41-year-old spent many years trying to get over her own self stigma following her diagnoses and says whilst there is much more support out there now, there is still a lot more which can be done.
Shea, of the Ravenscourt Park area, now provides support for others as an ambassador for mental health campaign Time To Change and explains medical developments in the coming years could prove instrumental in further understanding mental health.
"The last 13 years have been fantastic in terms of coming to terms with what a mental health issue is and is not" she says, adding: "Media portrayals have improved since the days of Hitchcock and Psycho, but there is a lot more to come.
"One of the things I think will be really instrumental in that is when we're able to push our medical understanding of these illnesses, we are able to use x-rays to look at broken bones and tiny little microscopes to look at blood cells, when we're able to do that with the same amount of efficiency and clarity with mental health issues, I think we'll see two things happen.
"One, we'll have a much better understanding of how people are affected by mental health issues and two, we'll have a much greater understanding and empathy towards those who are going through it and that just takes time."
'It's just a tiny part of who I am'
The mother-of-one stressed we should not wait around for that day; explaining what can be done in the meantime she said: "Understand that these illnesses are just a small, small part of a whole person, it's a tiny facet of my life, is having bipolar disorder and while I talk about it a lot, because it needs to be talked about, it's just a tiny part of who I am."
Shea explains due to mental health illnesses being invisible, many can struggle to come to terms with understanding it is there: "We always tend to look to the out words when it comes to illness.
"We see someone in a cast, we're going to open the door for them, we see someone in a wheelchair, we're going to step out of the way, we don't see a mental health issue unless it's very obvious that a person is acting out of result from it.
"What we need to understand is that that mental health issue is there whether it presents itself physically or not."
'There is no such thing as being too concerned'
Talking directly to anyone who may be going through a mental health issue, Shea has this message: "Understand one thing, that there is no such thing as being too concerned.
"If you think at any moment that you might be having a few issues, talk to a doctor, talk to a trusted friend, a trusted family member, a minister, a clergyman, anything that you need to reach out to someone else.
"There is no such thing as saying 'I can brave through it'".
You can hear Shea's story in the video below.
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