I believe in paying it forward, particularly in respect of mental health issues. So many people seem to think they "understand" while missing the point spectacularly. We who live under the obnoxious cloud of depression, OCD, Bipolar, Borderline or whatever other bastardy the establishment have labelled, or not, should trade experiences and advice. We're the ones who know, we're the ones who live it, and we're the ones who, with every breath we take, DEFEAT IT. Some days, just a few words that hit the right spot can send my day in a better direction. So if something occurs to me, something that I feel I need or have needed when the misery chips were down, and I think it can help someone else, I'll say it, whether that means putting it on my fb status or messaging a friend, whatever.
Last week, I posted the following on FB:
"Here's a little advice - if someone you love is experiencing a mental health problem but they don't want to talk about it with you, don't let that stop you checking on them. They're probably not ignoring you, they're probably working through their shit and have a lot going on. By not engaging with them at all, you're not helping them, you're isolating them and that's just not kind. Just check in, make them feel like they're noticed. When you spend at least part of your life feeling like nothing, it's good to know you're worth just a little of someone's time. It's easy in this day and age."
I'd realised how hard it must be for other people to sometimes know whether to "bother" me or just leave me be. My response is JUST ASK ME. I won't flip out or destroy myself (or you) because of your enquiry. I can always ignore it, especially in this day and age. My intention was to make it clear that dicking about is not the way to go. If you're concerned, ask. DIRECTLY. Don't ask someone else to check or beat around the bush, and certainly don't ignore those you profess to care about. Even if you don't get a response, the fact that you've bothered to ask them directly will, more often than not, be thoroughly appreciated. Being seen is invaluable at times. It's really that simple.
While I'm talking about sharing, you should really check out my friend Ren Warom's vlogs (see links at bottom*). She's got a brain I could swim in and she gives good advice, plus, her vlogs are one of the ways I remind myself I'm not alone. The worst thing about any mental health issue is that the first thing it does is make you feel alone. Horribly, achingly, fearfully alone. If I can make one tiny bit of difference to that, I'm going to do it.
*Check Ren out here -