Living with Mental Illnesses

By Char Shields - March 05, 2017

Hey guys!

So, I wanted to talk about mental illnesses and just how hard it is to live with them because a lot of people don't understand, especially if they have never experienced one.

It is one of the hardest things to live with and can sometimes make you act in certain ways that others may find annoying or confusing.

For me, depression has been one of the hardest things to deal with and it's something that just doesn't go away.

Suddenly, getting out of bed in the morning is the hardest thing to do. At the beginning of this university semester, I spent about 2 weeks in bed because I felt so awful. I couldn't sleep at night, and I couldn't get up in the morning. The world seemed like a horrible place. No one understood why I was acting like that. When I tried to reach out for help, I was told that there was nothing wrong with me. I felt like that I would never get out of it.

Depression destroyed all of my friendships at school and makes it harder to maintain new ones. One minute I was a social butterfly, the next I was sitting alone at lunch.

It destroys all productivity and motivation. I lose interest in the things I love. It makes me feel unsure with life. Unsure that I want to carry on.

And the anxiety that affects my day to day life, that creates problems that do not exist.

I get angry at my friends, at people around me when it is simply my brain creating something that eats away at me. I overthink every little detail, and make it into a huge thing.

It stops me from going out; I panic too much. It makes me think that everyone hates me. That I am useless. I have the overwhelming need to run away from situations.

And the self hatred that makes me angry at my own reflection. That makes me spend an hour and a half getting ready to only still look in the mirror and call myself ugly and fat and stupid.

I get mad at myself. Mad that I'm not losing weight fast enough. Mad that I'm not good enough. I buy clothes that are sizes too big for me to hide myself.

I can never stop picking on myself. I will never leave me be.

But I am not my mental illness.

All of these things don't matter. How I deal with these things is what really matters.

Choosing to get out of bed in the morning and living my life.

Making new friends. Heck, I have made new friends and they are amazing people.

Doing my work for university. Working out. Going for walks. Taking photographs. Meeting new people. Writing blog posts.

Quit overthinking and just breathe.

I am alive. I have a roof over my head and food in my belly. I am lucky enough to be at university, studying a course that I love and are good at.

I love my friends, I love my family, I love my boyfriend and I appreciate everything they do for me. I am finally surrounded by people who refuse to give up on me.

It is hard dealing with these things in my mind. My brain is not my friend and some days I mess up and get things wrong. Some days, I leave the house even though my mind is screaming at me not to, to just give up.

People with mental illnesses are not horrible people. Their brains just function in different ways.

I am trying so hard to work on myself and to be happy and healthy. I can overcome these things.

You can overcome these things. You are not your mental illness.

Until the next time,
Char.

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2 comments

  1. I've lived with Depression and Anxiety for over 20 years, it's great to see someone else be open about their own problems. I really can't understand why there is still a stigma in society. The brain is like every other organ in the body. Ours is just wired a little differently xx

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    1. I'm so sorry to hear that. I really can't understand the stigma either, there is not enough attention or awareness when it comes to mental health and we should all be able to be more open about it xx

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