While I am a very sympathetic, sensitive person, I am getting to the point where I have hardened on some things in regards to healing from psychiatric illnesses. Refusing help because you are afraid of stigma is one of the biggest things that rankles my nerves raw.
The stigma is real. I get that. But you’re not helping the stigma by refusing to reach out.
The above quote does not mean you can fix your mental illness through your thinking. It simply means that the way you think about things can help the way you feel about them. I accept my bipolar disorder as any other illness, and because I do, I don’t feel so bad that I have this disorder, which allows me to accept it so that the next time I’m depressed, even severely depressed, I’ll know what I need to do in order to take care of myself.
In any case, by refusing to reach out, you are damning yourself to becoming worse. Close friends and family don’t want to believe in your illness? Seek help elsewhere. This will take work on your part, but you WILL be able to find at least one person willing to listen to you. Even at my severest I found people, people I didn’t know too well, that I was able to talk to and they were able to fuel my thinking about my illness by telling me their stories as well. Hell, go online and reach out through chat groups and allow this reaching out to fuel your thinking.
I know a lot of introverts use the internet as an escape from their illnesses. And that’s great. It’s good to have a blog you can dump your feelings on as a way to find others similar to you. What’s not good is using misery to find misery.
On Tumblr, in the mental illness tags, teens will post incredibly triggering pictures claiming they help them cope. Those pictures are not helping in the least. If they were, you would be getting better. I’m not going to post any of them, but I can tell you triggering pictures are only fueling whatever it is that is going on in your mind that made you post the picture: self-harm, suicidal ideation, anorexia, bulimia, ect…
Pictures like this enrage me because it is almost an active defiance of a refusal to get better. Depression makes you not want to get better because depression doesn’t want you to get better–or mental illness in general–but that is why you have to reach out in a healthy manner. When I was suicidal, I would go to online chat groups with others who were. We wouldn’t even talk about suicide. We would talk about everyday life or how to cope. Heck, what helped me most was helping others who felt on the brink of attempting, and my suicidal feelings would disappear after that. I didn’t let myself stew in those feelings. Why the heck would you want to? They’re terrible.
The point is don’t actively refuse to get help because of your thinking. Stigma be damned. Be one of the ones to help remove stigma from psychiatric illnesses. More and more people are beginning to understand, I can promise you that. People who don’t want to understand aren’t worth it, and you need to realize that.
9 thoughts on “Do Not Deny Yourself Help, My Fellow Spoonies”
One of my dear friends put it succinctly – your brain is trying to kill you. Not exactly the nicest thing, but it’s an apt enough reminder for me to keep fighting back. 🙂
I love that, actually. It’s so try. Your brain really is trying to kill you, and so you have to separate yourself from your brain, which is hard but can be done. You just need enough self-awareness.
Pretty much! Doesn’t stop it cold in its tracks, but at least it gives us a fighting chance. 🙂
I’ve never understood the point of triggering posts. They’re counterproductive at best and downright dangerous at worst, both for the original poster and their readers.
I saw one anon on Tumblr criticizing an OP for doing this, and she called this anon a pretty nasty word and told the anon he/she was jealous. The anon said the posts were triggering and no wonder there was backlash against the OP.
I can’t even tell you. She’s a kid, and it’s ironic because the anons who criticize her are kids going through their own crap, and here she is belittling them just because they’re angry she won’t post trigger warnings on her blog. Granted, some of the anons are really nasty, but some of them are just pointing out that triggering pictures are triggering and the least she could do is be considerate of others.
I found this quote in a google image search. I wanted to illustrate one of my posts about mental illness. i too have bipolar ‘disorder’ and have accepted it, embraced it even and transcended the hopelessness my depressions used to bring. I think these posts might interest you:
I have set up a new social enterprise called The Line Between. Have a look and see if you would like to get involved…. http://thelinebetweenuk.wordpress.com