I am blogging for mental health

May is Mental Health Month and today in particular is Mental Health Blogging Day.  I am a longtime sufferer of mentalMental Health Blog Party Badge illness and an advocate for awareness and support through the community support website Band Back Together.

I think days like this are important to let others know that they are not alone in their struggles with mental health issues.  Whether you are a sufferer, a friend, a family member, or an acquaintance of someone with a mental health issue, you can educate yourself and others and help make the world a more compassionate and supportive place.

My name is Crystal and I deal with mental illness on a regular basis.

Sometimes I don’t act like ME because I suffer from chronic Depression (diagnosed at age 14), Anxiety, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (DES-NOS, specifically).  I attend weekly therapy and take medication to help me manage these issues.  I have difficulties managing my response to stressful situations and memories due to the way that my brain processes information/stimuli – multiple traumas throughout my life have impacted the way I view and experience the world around me.

Despite dealing with these issues for so much of my life, I can still live a normal life – I am not ‘crazy.’  I have a wonderful relationship with my husband and son.  I have a great job at a place I’ve worked for the past 3.5 years.  I have friends and hobbies and many of the same worries that others out there have.

Most days I am a very high functioning individual.  Sometimes I need to step back from my responsibilities a little bit and focus on taking extra care of myself.  There are those days when I can’t get out of bed – on those days I need help from my support network of family and friends.  I have fantastic people in my life who have helped me even when they don’t know it.

*****

I have heard various awful things said about those who suffer from mental illness over the years, even from people I love.  The stigma of mental illness still leads people to state that they wouldn’t vote for a politician who was known to have a mental disorder, or that those with a mental illness should not have children.  It’s disheartening to hear these things and I’m hopeful that as we speak out, the stigma will lift more and more.

If you or someone you know suffers from a mental illness, please take the time to educate yourself about the symptoms and effects on their life.  If you would like to reach out to a community for support please visit Band Back Together.

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Comments

  1. angel brownawell says:

    Thanks for sharing your story and participating in our blog party.  

  2.  thank you for telling your story and linking up to promote mental health awareness and to banish stigma. I deal with those same issues, and Im glad Im getting to know you via The Band :)  *HUG*

  3. Amanda M. says:

    My father was Schizoaffective but refused treatment. I always wish he would have accepted the help that was offered but also realized that not accepting it was a symptom of his illness. In the end I was the one to accept his illness and it allowed me to release my anger and enjoy the time we did have together before he passed away. I am so happy that you can realize when you need to put yourself first and take time to heal. I am always here for you if you ever need anything!
    Amanda

  4. Anonymous says:

    I love you, beautiful lady.

  5.  Thank you for sharing. The stigma is still humungous, it’s true. So glad to be helping to break down walls with so many others today!

  6. You are incredibly brave to share something to personal and private about yourself, but I think the more that others do it, too, the more accepting society will become. At least I hope for that.  If they don’t, it’s their problem, though, not yours or anybody else’s who lives with this kind of reality.
    Thank you for being so open! You are pretty darn fantastic!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    You are so, so right. I have depression too, and most days it doesn’t affect who I am. There are days though…thank you for sharing with us!

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  1. [...] Day. Mental health – and illness – is a topic of great importance to me and something I’ve written about before. It’s importance has only grown as I’ve gotten older. My experiences with mental [...]

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