So, as many people may not know, May is Mental Health Awareness month!!!
Why is this important enough for an middle of the week blog post you ask?
Well, this is actually an INCREDIBLY important subject to me.
One, because I am currently a psychology student with the eventual, when I’m 80 years old, goal of becoming a counselor.
Two, because I have two mental illnesses.
When I was 11-12 years old, I tried to kill myself for the first time. I was heavily bullied, and with no support from the school or my family, I had lost hope.
By the time I was 13, I KNEW something was wrong with me. At the time, the only time I had heard the phrase “mental illness” was on TV, when someone was play a psychopath or a schizophrenic person-the major, medicine can’t help them, level. But I couldn’t get the thought out of my head that something was wrong with me.
So I went to see a psychologist. It was awful. She told me that I was crazy, that it was all in my head.
So I tried to kill myself again.
I finally changed schools and had a slight mental break down when I realized that school didn’t have to be hell, that people actually thought I had value. I just couldn’t mentally comprehend it, especially when my family life didn’t support it.
Hence suicide attempt #3
When I was sixteen, I tried to see the psychologist again, and, again, she told me I was crazy, it was all in my head. Except this time my parents were getting a divorce, and I learned my first important piece of information:
This horrible woman was my mom’s psychologist. My mom saw a psychologist. My mom had known something real was wrong with me the whole time.
I also had to see a new psychologist, because of the divorce. I knew my new psychologist was different just by the look of her sunlight room (the other woman’s was dark with a tiny, curtained window) with a pretty flower painting. It oozed positiveity. She had me diagnosed and set up with a doctor by the end of the first appointment.
I had depression and anxiety, probably passed down genetically from my mom.
I had a really illness. It wasn’t just in my head. And there was hope. There were medicines available that could help me.
My mom wouldn’t let me take any medication, and made me stop therapy, so I had to wait until I was 18 to restart therapy and medication. But at least I had hope, and I wasn’t crazy. And my medication? It was like suddenly a weight had been lifted, there was sunshine where it was once dark.
So why am I telling you this?
Because I am now over 10 years older, I am happily married, I am current in school, and I achieved my dream of being a published author. All while having two mental illnesses.
I want someone to read this and know that there is hope, that there is life with mental illnesses. That getting help and medication is important, and not to let a bad experience stop you from having the life you deserve.