Why be ashamed of having mental illness?

It shapes you as a person. It is part of who you are. Why deny it.

I’m not ashamed to say I suffer from mental illness. Namely depression and anxiety.

It gives me flavor 🙂

I saw a picture posted today on facebook. It was of a t-shirt with “no stigma” on the front and on the back it said “mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but stigma and bias shame us all” and I thought, hey, I’d be happy to wear that, as I am not ashamed.

Yeah, there certainly is a fair few people who still have a stigma, attitude around mental illness and yeah that kind of sucks. But hey, what does it say about them as a person? It doesn’t say anything positive. It shows they are naive, judgmental and they aren’t worth bothering with.

I have had some people show me that they have totally the wrong idea about mental illness. One such person accused me of having depression due to lack in confidence and low self esteem. And I was like, really?! You think that about me? Well clearly, you really don’t know me that well. As I have plenty of confidence(though maybe it lacks on occasion, but I am only human) and self esteem. Another person, pretty much treated me like I had a disability when I explained about my anxiety and panic attacks. I was like, really?! It is not a disability at all. I can still function.

I would never deny that I suffer from mental illness or be ashamed of it. And anyone who is ashamed to be associated with someone with mental health issues, well they better wake the fuck up and get over themselves!

I welcome people who want to share their experience with me about their mental illness. As not everyone is willing to listen and some people don’t care to hear their story and subsequently judge them. It’s your story, don’t feel ashamed and do share it if you feel comfortable to. And it’s worth sharing, as you will find some people who will get it, or aspects of it and that is comforting. Plus it is always nice to know you are not alone in your struggles.

I read something in a blog today about the blogger and therapy in the past and how he used to put across that everything was okay, when in therapy, to appear normal. And I was like, yeah, I totally relate to that. I used to, back in my youth, make out like everything was fine and I had no issues, in an attempt to deny that I was different and that I had issues. I didn’t want to go over my issues and the whole not feeling okay, as I wanted to be normal and I didn’t like being a broken person. And this of course in the long run wasn’t so helpful or healthy. But hey, all things happen for a reason and my experiences mold me into who I am today. And lessons have certainly been learned.

Eventually I grew up a bit and swallowed my pride and admitted I was a broken person and needed to get myself sorted once and for all. Which was when I was pregnant with my first child, whom I was a solo Mum to. She motivated me to sort my shit out, while I was pregnant. So I could be the best possible mother to her, once she arrived. Though granted, being there is no manual on parenting, I wasn’t the perfect mother, but no mother is. We all have flaws.

I too used to have the wrong idea about mental illness. I used to think it was something that could be cured and would get frustrated when it came up over and over again. Even though I thought it was ‘fixed’ and it shouldn’t be an issue anymore.

Yeah, clearly I found out that I was wrong.

I have now come to realize that, mental illness will always been in my life in some way and it’s about learning strategies to get through it. And with experience, I’ll get better at dealing with these down times.

Right that is all I have to say. Ciao.

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