Hello world. Please comment.
November 17, 2010 at 8:01 am (Edit)
I could write a book….but suffice it to say, to the day she died, my mother never even told her best friend that I had had a breakdown and was on medication, my sister said I couldn’t possibly be a Christian and be mentally ill, people at church have told me that they actually walked across pews to avoid talking with me when I was sick, and, even though I’m off all medications but Klonopin and seeing a therapist only every three or four months “just to keep in touch”, I can’t go anywhere or meet anyone new without feeling as if I’m wearing a sign saying “Mentally Ill” around my neck. My attitude about people with emotional problems? God bless them…and I pray that they have a really good connection with HIm. It (and the love of my family) is the only thing that kept me alive.
Question: aside from the obvious nausea and anger that stigma and prejudice bring on, what do you have to say? Please tell me your story.
- Glenn Close on mental illness: Say it loud (danapress.typepad.com)
- Glenn Close: Fighting To Destigmatize ‘Mentally Ill’ (huffingtonpost.com)
- Glenn Close reminds us that one in four families is touched by mental illness (4-hnews.blogspot.com)
Sadly, my father would be one of “those people at church”. He has said repeatedly that if you really know Jesus you won’t need counseling or medication for mental health issues. I believe that my mother has suffered from major depression for most, if not all, of my life. But she never dared to see anyone about it. I, too, have been through a lot of emotional stuff. I have psychologist friends who I meet for lunch (and treat) but I haven’t been to counseling either. I know and love Jesus and am certain that He wouldn’t want one of His loved ones to suffer but strangely enough while I would recommend counseling for a friend but I would never get it for myself as long as my father is alive. He’s 76. On the other hand, I’m sure my father wouldn’t deny a diabetic his/her insulin.
Hang in there, Nancy, you are doing the right thing! I believe that folks with the attitude of my father will be held accountable for their judgment, if not in this life then the next…
Louise, thank you so much for sharing your story! That took so much courage. We are better because we share life with each other. Nancy, and the rest of the world don’t feel it always, but they are not alone and you are one more voice to remind us! Keep on!
I’ve been met with people like that in your post, and Louise’s. I don’t do much, nor go out because of the fear of constantly being judged, even by strangers who have no idea who I am, or about my illness. When people ask about what I do and I mention I have 2 children I’m now raising on my own, being ill, on disability and yet attempting to get thru college in the FULL hope I CAN one day provide better and manage a somewhat ‘normal’ life.
Alot of people look…shocked. Oh disabled? *looks me up and down*. With also having Fibromyalgia it’s a double hitter because most people (and some doctors I’ve met in attempting to get help) smirk, assume I MUST be faking it. In turn of course this is bad for ME personally in having to wake up and do the same thing every day with knowing people sneer, people judge, there ARE those out there who do ‘get it’. But sadly it’s far and few in between. I’d like to attend a church or something. My kids would like it too I think.
I try my best with what we have at home and try to NOT be a shut in (again my desires to be a total shut in) it gives way to thoughts I don’t wanna dwell on. For now, I try to find support online in chat and people in support groups of similar mind and beliefs. I think people, especially of the faith, would benefit if councilors and pastors were more trained in this area, so that it CAN be addressed. The best that can be done is make people aware.
wow. and wow. Erin your story has a thousand voices of women who haven’t spoken or been heard. keep talking. you are beautiful.
Looking around I saw things about being a ‘friend to yourself’. I just wanted to say I love that idea. And something, while has it’s ups and downs, is something I myself have had to rely on. It’s great this is up and can be shared. I think alot of people need to see this, for sure. Be blessed.
a perfect example of “if you don’t say it, people won’t know it.” i am blessed because u said this!
E.B., I have Fibromyalgia, also. My husband, a retired scientist, is certain it is from my taking, over a four year period, over 41 psychotropic medications, which were given to me first to help with severe depression and later to help with Fibromyalgia. (I find that ironic!) I want you to know that there are SO many people out there like us…depressed andin incredible pain every day. Check our the Fibromyalgia network on the computer. It helps. But knowing God and believing in yourself helps you get through another day…and another. God bless you. Be strong, even when I know for sure that you don’t feel strong. One day, they will find a way to help us.
And thank you, Sana, for this blog site. It’s a blessing all its own!!
You are of course welcome. It is a blessing that goes both ways and every day I am so grateful for you and the others reading and writing and sharing space with me. Keep on!
Thank you so much for your encouraging words.
A lot of people have a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” mentality or “what could you possibly have to be depressed about?” attitude, not understanding that mental disorder is chemical and not simply a reaction to life’s circumstances or something someone can control by reacting to it.
Thank you Teri for your frank objective comment. It helps to take some of the emotion out of it sometimes in order to be more present and healing the reality. It doesn’t mean emotion isn’t just as real and sharing them has a wonderful role in presence. A time for everything! So thank you. Keep on!
Wow! I, too, feel this site is a blessing. It’s also wonderful to know we aren’t alone…
Thanks for the inspiring feedback! It makes each day better.
I’ve had to deal with family member who went through this ordeal and subsequently put us through the ordeal as well.
One of the places where the “Church” fails is to occasionally instantly “brand” certain individuals such as the Goth girls for just being “strange” and when they run into difficult times they don’t see themselves turning to “Church people”.
Christian metal band Demon Hunter shows concert footage where the fans reach out to them and where they minister to the people.
Many of the kids are broken beyond belief but in those hard rockers they see people who understand that “suicide did make sense” at some stage without seeing any condemnation .
Hello Thysleroux. I love the unfolding of your life. You disclose slowly and well timed through words and pictures and something else like sentiment that can’t be quite described. Now I see you with long hair and bruises on your head from banging it too much too often to music that is too loud. Awesome! Keep on.
I’ve experienced a lot from folks in the church who haven’t a clue about mental illness. Even had someone try to cast a demon out of me while on the phone!
Thankfully walls are coming down and people in the church are beginning to understand that a brain can get sick. I’m very thankful for that.
At the same time people need to be educated and the suffering need hope and understanding. I have been seeking to do that in my own way through my blog I began about two and a half years ago.
I am glad you dropped by and posted today Sana as it gave me the chance to drop by your site. God bless! Allan
send the thank-you’s around because i feel the same way! glad you came, and glad i went. your blog is inspiring!!!! check it out folks! morethancoping.wordpress.com
i’ve been hurt by “the church” too and have realized that they aren’t to blame but still we must fight stigma tooth and nail. it sucks but it does go both ways i think. http://wp.me/p10lj3-wA
it matters taking care of ourselves and how we feel about and react to others. mental health starts and ends with “Me.”
thank you again for commenting. keep on!