As a warning – this post could be a trigger and discusses depression, suicide, and anxiety.
This is a post that I’ve started writing a hundred times before (okay, that’s a slight exaggeration but you get the point). It’s a post I’ve had a version of sitting in my draft pages for over two years now. It’s a statement I’ve hardly ever shared publicly, and only recently begun to share with my family. Given the discussions surrounding mental health nowadays, it seems more important than ever to share my own experiences.
I know I haven’t posted on here in a long time, but to be honest I sort of lost my love of writing for a very long time. In fact, I lost my love of just about everything, and it’s only recently I’ve started to feel a bit more like myself.
When I was 11 ish, I was diagnosed with depression and suicidal ideation. It wasn’t until more than 10 years later that I was also diagnosed with general anxiety disorder. As all too many people know, having these two conflicting notions within you is such a contrary situation, yet so often they go hand in hand.
I wanted to share this post because this sort of topic, while becoming more “acceptable” in mainstream conversations, still feels taboo. In all honesty, a large part of me (the part that has continuously buried these feelings and put on a “happy” face) is terrified to share it now, but I feel I have to – if this post reaches even just one person who then knows they’re not alone, it’s worth it.
The pandemic certainly didn’t help with my mental health – or anyone’s – though I was fighting a battle against another depressive episode even before it started. For the first time in my life, I took a much-needed break from work, and sought therapy, something that I had once had a bad experience with. For the first time, I decided that my own mental health came above trying to put on a brave face and power through it, and it’s something I wish more people would do for themselves.
I’m lucky to have the amazing family and friends I have, who have all been nothing but supportive to me. I know not everyone who experiences this is lucky enough to have people they can reach out to.
I don’t want to get into the ins and outs of my specific things I deal with, but it felt wrong to continue posting without addressing my absence.
If you are reading this and you, too, have similar experiences with no one to reach out to, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. The most important thing I can impart is that you’re never alone, no matter how solitary you’re feeling. There is always someone willing to listen if you need it, or offer advice if you prefer.