I don’t always want to acknowledge my mental health. It’s exhausting having to live with it on my bad days, to think about it, let alone talk about it. They say open up & don’t be afraid to talk & it’s true but sometimes it is so hard to do.
I didn’t want to show that I was struggling. I retreated into myself & became quite reclusive. I put a face on around people. Only when I was behind closed doors did I let my guard down.
Things were hard, there were some things I did or thought that I am completely ashamed of that will never ever be shared [and I’ve shared a lot about my mental health]. I can categorically say that I would never have shared it with a friend who had reached out either.
Friends messaged me, tried to arrange to catch up. I gave the usual ‘I’m fine’/’doing really well’ spiel & then made excuses to cancel dates. Those messages started dwindling. Friendships got lost because of my depression.
It is fantastic to reach out & be #thereforher but remember that sometimes you won’t get a reply, or that reply won’t be entirely honest. Stick at it. Your friend may not want to talk at the moment but keep persevering.
Give that friend time for them to know that they can trust you to provide a safe place for them to talk & let their guard down without judgement.
Having mental health issues is a daily struggle. Awareness weeks & campaigns are brilliant but we shouldn’t forget once they are over.
On that note I will be running [not physically running…] to my therapy session this morning after a five week gap!
I can be truly honest with my therapist & not feel guilty that my words may cause hurt or worry. It’s definitely making a massive difference to my mental health. I feel lighter when I finish my session & that’s one of the best feelings in the world.
If you need help but don’t necessarily want to speak to a friend for whatever reason then you could find help via Mind.
[most of the words were taken from my instagram post but I wanted a more permanent space for them – hence the blog post]