I've been debating writing a post like this for a while, you may have read a post a while ago, it has now been deleted relating to this subject. I deleted it as it was too personal and found that it was actually rather upsetting to some very important people to me. Due to the increasing awareness around this topic I thought I would readdress the subject, hopefully in a less crude manner, (however crude may as well be my middle name, I'm not one for sugar coating, unless of course its edible).
So where to begin, ok well, I have suffered with depression for over 20 years. I say over 20 years as I'm pretty certain that even prior to the obvious triggers, I displayed signs of depression that and the fact that I was bullied for years before. Anyway lets just say that for a long time now I have been dealing with depression, which I have to be honest I have not dealt with very well over the years but as they say you learn from your mistakes. As well as depression I've also been coping with anxiety for probably just as long, both stress anxiety and social anxiety. This has made coping with everyday life difficult and sometimes less than enjoyable. I have missed out on many opportunities because of my illness, had disturbing thought of killing myself and harming both my self and others, I have pushed people away out of fear and I have harmed myself and still feel the need to harm myself. I have erratic mood swings and emotional outbursts.
I'm aware that I'm not cured as this is an illness with no "cure", but I feel I have learnt to manage and recognise my triggers, I know what upsets me and although I still try to avoid putting my self in the situations that are triggers I do put my self in them to try and better deal with them and understand that the world is actually not as scary as it is in my head. And you know what it really isn't that's the problem. The world is a very ordinary place supposedly still doesn't make it scary lots of things we're scared of are the dark, dogs, snakes, fish, flying but we still do.
Ok so why the decision for this post I've seen posts helping people cope with mental illness and as much as I am not wanting to give anyone advice more than a what not to do. I also want people to know that not coping well with an illness is just bad. Unfortunately for my self I dislike talking about my issues and feelings to medical professionals and I have tried getting help from my doctor and have seen therapists but I find them to have been patronising and antagonise my stress points so I gave up on those a long time ago I find doctors more supportive with infections and the like rather than anything they cant see. I'm not saying that you shouldn't go to the doctors about this sort of thing infact the opposite i'm saying you should and hopefully you wont discover that you have anger management issues the hard way. See a specialist, fight to see a specialist don't find your self at 30 something still struggling to cope with a basically horribly underrated illness.
I want to share with you some of the things I wished I'd done sooner.
1. Spoken to someone, wether it was a friend, teacher, or even a doctor when I 1st started having depressing thoughts.
2. Researched or had the resources too (yes when I was young the internet was very limited).
3. There are plenty of charities out there that specialise in mental illness and mental health that you can approach anonymously if you need, that are there to help, people like mind, sane, samaritans, childline (if your young like I was).
4. Know that you are NOT alone I know that the symptoms of depression are a feeling of isolation but there are hundreds if not millions who have some form of mental health problems apparently 1 in 4 people either suffer or know someone who suffers from mental health issues. I do feel that that statistic may be slightly out of date as I'm certain at some point in all our lives we have had or will have some form of mental health issue, due to the increasing stresses that are imposed on us in everyday life.
5. If you do decide to go it alone, I know sometimes the thought of interacting with other people can be daunting, but there are to put it mildly a fuck tonne of "self help" options out there, from books, apps, websites, teas, candles. I sometimes find that even just going to my room and putting my favourite songs on or watching my favourite videos.
I hope if you read this have any issues surrounding depression or mental health you found it helpful please feel free to leave me a comment with your thoughts or email me directly my emails available on the about me page. And remember your not alone in being alone.