Worth Living Ambassador Felicia Singh
Hello, my name is Felicia. I am a 25 year old healthcare professional and counseling/psychology student with anxiety. As well as someone with an unexplainable yearning to understand mental health disorders. The who, what, where, when, and whys of it all. I am a regular contributor to the Worth Living Blog.
Give Support to Get Support
I’ve mentioned in my past posts how crucial a strong support system is to living a stable and fulfilling lifestyle when living with a mental illness. For those who deal with a mental illness, you are aware of the trials and struggles that you may go through. The ups and downs of your illness. Now think for a second what those trials and struggles may be like for the people in your life. How do they feel?
Communication is key in any healthy relationship. Being able to effectively interact with the people in our lives is important. For someone who plays the role of a spouse, parent, friend, or family member to someone with a mental illness communication may not seem such a simple thing. It’s important to discuss the details of your mental illness with the people in your life. They should understand your stressors and your triggers just as well as you do.
What about your role in a relationship? We discuss often the stigma that surrounds mental health and the assumptions that people tend to make about those of us who may be living with a mental health disorder.
Let’s be objective for a second and actually take a look at some of those stereotypes that may actually have merit. Can you be moody and unpredictable? Do you have a difficult time connecting and relating to other people? Are you inconsistent? Do you ever feel irrational? For those of us that deal with bipolar disorder, anxiety, depression, or other personality disorders (just to name a few), these may actually describe a few aspects of our personality. Our illness is our illness. We must all play the cards that we were dealt BUT you should play the hell out of them.
Your mental illness does not have to define who you are. It doesn’t give you a pass to treat the people in your life unfairly. It’s not a get out of jail free card. It’s something that we should except, explore, and figure out the best method of how to best deal with it. Understand that for the people in your life your mental illness can be frustrating and confusing.
Take some time today to really tell the people in your life how much you appreciate and respect them. Take responsibility for your behaviors and actions. Come up with different and healthy ways for dealing with your mental illness. Having a mental illness is not a choice but choosing to deal or not deal with it is. Remember that. As long as you’re alive your life has meaning and it’s definitely worth living.