AN SNP MSP who resigned as a minister in the Scottish Government citing “post-traumatic stress” has hit out at hostility online.

Elena Whitham quit her role as the drugs minister in Humza Yousaf’s government on Tuesday evening, saying she “experienced a series of events leading to post-traumatic stress which has impacted my wellbeing greatly and for which I am receiving treatment”.

Whitham had been appointed to the key ministerial role in March 2023, after previously serving as community safety minister.

Many of her SNP colleagues wrote to wish her well moving forward. The First Minister said: “Elena is a treasured colleague and friend who has worked hard and delivered while in Government. I am deeply saddened to hear about her ill health.

“Politics, in particular, can be brutal. We will seek to support Elena as much as we can during what is a difficult period for her.”

However, many accounts responding to the news were more hostile.

Some suggested she was being “insincere,” that the post-traumatic stress excuse was somehow fabricated, and demanded to know what events had led to her treatment. Others accused the MSP of being a “grifter”.

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Other social media users called out the hostility, with one writing: “Some of the comments on here are just beyond belief.

“This is a person going through a hellish time and some see it as an opportunity to hurl abuse. Wishing Elena all the best.”

On Wednesday morning, Whitham also spoke out against the “animus” from some corners, while also thanking others.

The now-former minister wrote: “My decision to leave my ministerial post was not an easy one but a necessary one for my wellbeing.

“Thank you for all the kind messages I have received but it is clear from some of the animus, we still have such a long way to go when it comes to openly talking about mental health.”

In December, a survey of around 6000 Scots adults and children was published which suggested that wellbeing in Scotland was at its lowest level on record.

The Scottish Health Survey, published by the Scottish Centre for Social Research and the Scottish Government, involved 4394 adults and 1764 children in 2022. The average score was 47, down from 48.6 the previous year and the lowest since it was first logged in 2008, when it was measured at 50.

Mental wellbeing appeared to be heavily impacted by both deprivation levels and age.