In this national “conversation” about mental illness, you’ll notice something interesting: no one seems terribly interested in talking with mentally ill people.
The mentally ill are people we talk about, not people we talk to. We aren’t interested in having a conversation with them, despite the fact that they’re the ones most affected by the issue. We love telling horror stories about what happens to mentally ill people who don’t have access to mental health services, but we never ask people with mental illnesses what they think of the issue.
[…]By excluding people with mental illnesses from the conversation, and privileging the voices of those who see mental illness as something terrifying, we are dehumanizing people with mental illnesses. They are not even worth trying to understand. They’re just a problem to be solved, a fear to be controlled.
Yes, yes, yes. I mean this in all seriousness…start talking to people with mental illnesses, even ones with ‘severe’ mental illness in one form or another. Stop speaking about us in a roundabout fear mongering way.
Hell, I’ll sit down & talk about mental illness things for hours at a time. No really, that’s an invitation to the world.
You can talk to me too!
My counselor left almost two hours early because he wasn’t feeling well. I was actually relieved because we usually do like three hours a way, though it’s somehow more than that almost always and I’ve been having an off day so I wanted some alone time.
However, all day I’ve had ranges of emotions - I started off very, very sad today, then I was okay in the middle of the day and then by my math class, after a stressful test of course. I was feeling really down again through my afternoon classes I had a fair amount of distraction so I was fine and when I got home up until now, same thing so I was fine.
But now, I’ve got that alone time. I don’t even know what to do or why I’m feeling like this. I assume that it’s stress and I’m not coping very well, which is typical of me right now as the holidays are approaching again and being without loved ones sucks. I honestly feel like I walk on eggshells this time of year around my mom, but I guess it’s how she deals - lashing out. I prefer to bottle it up.
I guess I have been withdrawing a lot, not to anyone’s notice but hey! I’m just…sad.
When I was having a really really rough time with my depression/anxiety my freshman year of college, I hated alone time. Every time I was alone, with nothing to do, I’d just get this feeling of sinking dread in the pit of my stomach and I’d start crying and I didn’t know why I was crying or why I couldn’t stop. Weekends at school were the worst, because there were no classes to occupy my mind. I would wake up and be OK for the first few minutes and then start crying. It was horrible. Now that I’m on medication and my MH issues are stable, I LOVE free time.
[Image description: The caption reads “Bad Brain logic:” YPG is sitting down with her laptop. She types “We talked ystarday.”
Bad Brain appears and says “That typo totally means you have a brain tumor.”
YPG facepalms and says “Oh be quiet.”]
It’s amazing how often you can be convinced you’re going to die.
I’m sorry, did you mean MY LIFE???
We are the girls with anxiety disorders, filled appointment books, five-year plans. We take ourselves very, very seriously. We are the peacemakers, the do-gooders, the givers, the savers. We are on time, overly prepared, well read, and witty, intellectually curious, always moving… We pride ourselves on getting as little sleep as possible and thrive on self-deprivation. We drink coffee, a lot of it. We are on birth control, Prozac, and multivitamins… We are relentless, judgmental with ourselves, and forgiving to others. We never want to be as passive-aggressive as our mothers, never want to marry men as uninspired as our fathers… We are the daughters of the feminists who said, “You can be anything,” and we heard, “You have to be everything.
Lemon Lime Lexapro, now in a handy soda form! :P
Inspired by the Xanax Vending Machine.
Note: The cure for asthma is not, “Just breathe!”, and the cure for cancer is not, “Stop growing those cells!” Similarly, the cure for depression is not, “Just be happier!”, and the cure for anxiety is not, “Stop worrying so much!” These are not phases of life for teenagers and the weak-minded - they are serious and chronic medical illnesses.
Catalina Ferro performs “Anxiety Group”
Oh. My. God.
This is amazing.
The worst part about anxiety attacks, is that you’re aware it’s irrational and sometimes unexplainable, but knowing that gives no aid what so ever. In most cases it deepens the anxiety as you realise “if I know it’s irrational, why can’t I stop it… Oh god I can’t stop it,” you begin to believe you are no longer in control of your mind. That. That is fear.
[Image: 18-piece green-colored background with a common house mouse. Top text reads: “ “Just stop be anxious about everything, you worry too much!” ” Bottom text reads: “ “Gee thanks for your great advice. I’ll just tell my mental illness to stop right now.” ”]
Anxiety is not fear, exactly, because fear is focused on something right in front of you, a real and objective danger. It is instead a kind of fear gone wild, a generalized sense of dread about something out there that seems menacing — but that in truth is not menacing, and may not even be out there. If you’re anxious, you find it difficult to talk yourself out of this foreboding; you become trapped in an endless loop of what-ifs.
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