Hey, it’s World Mental Health Day folks! That means that for the other 3 out of 4 of you… well, I guess we have to remind you about it. Again.
Yeah, I get it. Was the same when I had cancer. Makes people uncomfortable, they end up saying inappropriate and sometimes hurtful things, and so we end up not saying much either, even when feeling just a little bit understood would make all the difference.
And hey, not really your fault guys, since we are all conditioned to not show the cracks, to keep a stiff upper lip, to appear NORMAL at all costs.
But you know what? Sometimes that costs too much.
Last time I “opened up” to someone about the shitty time I was experiencing one day a couple of months ago their response was that I should talk to a professional. So I’ve pretty much buttoned up since then. Well, except for here. I can say whatever I want here, which is the whole point of this blog.
All my adult life (since I left home at 15) I have heard this…
“But you always look so strong and calm”.
Well guess what? It’s called a coping mechanism.
For those of you who know what this is like, how it feels to be told this, remember that you’re not alone. And that asking for help is not weakness (I’m still working on that last one).
It’s only been recently (post cancer) that I’ve been able to admit to suffering from chronic, sometimes crippling, anxiety, even though it’s been with me since I was a child growing up in an abusive home. I’m still not doing great with it, should probably be doing things better, but today I am doing this. Letting you know you are not alone. Just keep talking. ❤
I only for the first time, already Medicare age, in the last year filled in an intake form at a new doctor’s office asking if I had anxiety issues or had suffered trauma. And I answered honestly that the things doctors have done to me and the way they’ve spoken guarantee that I will always be an inch from a panic attack in a doctor’s office. And the people there RESPECTED it. It blew me away. Only why did it take so long for someone to address that? Before, I’ve been SHOUTED at for showing the physical signs of terror. Or looked at disinterestedly when I explained, as if I’d just said I was a little allergic to fish, or something.
I never give completely honest answers to the “depression surveys” that are now apparently the thing. Who tf is going to say they felt bad about themselves or despondent five out of seven days last week and guarantee someone’s going to red-flag them as someone who oughta have drugs stuffed down them? And incidentally, in 2020 who’s not despondent?
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Well, all I got in response after four months of excruciating shoulder and arm pain was … take these pills. And I imagine it’s easier to find the source of physical pain than emotional stuff.. So most times they take the easy way out.
I haven’t had a doctor I could actually talk to since I lived in Toronto, more than 30 years ago.
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