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18 Myths About Mental Illness People Believed Before They Were Diagnosed

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Often people get their first official “Intro to Mental Illness” after they — or a close loved one — receive a diagnosis. Until then, our idea of who’s “mentally ill” is often shaped by media portrayals, misconceptions and misinformation. Even after a diagnosis, it may take someone years to feel comfortable in this new label’s skin, trying to figure out who they are and who they can be with a diagnosis.

But, people learn. And many learn if they find the right treatment plan and support, they can live full and successful lives despite their previous misconceptions. And if we spread this information now, it could help someone in the future know they too can find themselves after a diagnosis.

To find out what misconceptions people had about mental illnesses before they were diagnosed, we asked the International Bipolar Foundation’s community — as part of their “Say It Forward” campaign — to tell us one myth they previously believed.

Here’s what they had to say:

Myth #1: I thought I would never be able to have a normal relationship with anyone outside my family.” — Yumkhaibam R.

While it’s true mental illnesses can affect your relationship with others, living with a mental illness doesn’t doom you to dysfunctional relationships. With communication and understanding, living with a mental illness doesn’t make you any less likely to have beautiful, “normal” relationships.

Myth #2: “You could never feel well again.” — Jennifer M.

While many illnesses like bipolar disorder don’t have a clear cut “cure,” once you find the right treatment plan, it is 100 percent possible to feel “well.” “Well” might not last forever, but it can come.

Myth #3: “People with a mental illness could not function in day to day living with ‘normal’ people.”— Nyssa H.

False. People with mental illness are all around us. Nyssa added, “I was so wrong so. so wrong. We can and we thrive and we live.”

Myth #4: “[I thought] it wasn’t real unless it was an extreme case.” —  Louisa P.

Mental illnesses exists on a spectrum. Just because you are “higher functioning” doesn’t mean your illness isn’t real.

Myth #5: I didn’t realize how much of my life is affected by my mental illness. Relationships, friendships, family.” — Tiffany L.

It’s true — because some symptoms of mental illnesses affect your behavior, it can affect your loved ones. That’s one of the reasons why communicating to your friends and family about what you need when your behavior is affected is so important.

Myth #6: I believed once I was an adult I would mature and grow out of my illness, that my problems were just a ‘teenager phase’ that everyone goes through.” — Mary C.

Mental illnesses are not a phase or something you can just “grow out of.” Although they can be managed, they often have to be managed for life.

Myth #7: “I didn’t know it was so common.” — Francesca F.

If you live with a mental illness you are not alone. One out of five adults in the United States live with a mental illness, and about 5.7 million live with bipolar disorder. There is strength in these numbers.

Myth #8: “[I thought] people with mental health problems just want attention and special treatment.” — Robin S.

Nope.

Myth #9: “[I thought] I was unfit to become a mom, and it was unfair to my children if I thought about having a family!” — Lisa M.

You can be a great parent and live with a mental illness. Lisa continued, “Four kids later, yes it’s hard but I’m a good mom! And hey, no one said motherhood was easy.”

Myth #10: “I thought I was weak.” — Josey M.

Having a mental illness does not make you weak. In fact, facing a mental illness head on makes you brave.

Myth #11: I was told there was nothing wrong with me, I just didn’t have enough faith.” — Jenni H.

Living with a mental illness does not correlate with how much faith you have. Mental illnesses do not discriminate.

Myth #12:Taking medication was a sign of defeat.” — Tracy S.

Taking medication is sometimes a necessary treatment tool — it has nothing to do with whether the person is “strong” or “weak.”

Myth #13: “I believed I had to hide it, it was a failure on my part.” — Meghan S.

Developing a mental illness is not your fault. It’s not a failure. It’s nothing to be ashamed of.

Myth #14: “[I thought] depression just meant you were sad all the time.” — Jennifer A.

Depression can be a lot of things, and often only part of it is persistent sadness. But it’s not the kind of sadness that automatically goes away when you do something you love. Other symptoms include: fatigue, loss of interest in activities you used to love, insomnia, irritability and changes in appetite.

Myth #15: “I thought my since I was outgoing and a happy, bubbly personality I couldn’t have a mental illness.” — Mandi N.

A mental illness is not a temperament. You can be naturally optimistic and still live with a mental illness.

Myth #16: “I believed people with mental illness could get better just by sheer force of will.” — Laura L.

Although a willingness to get better certainly can’t hurt, you won’t control a mental illness by will and will alone. Effort will only get you as far as the coping methods you learn and treatment options you go for.

Myth #17: “I would have to face it alone.” – Nick T.

When you live with a mental illness, you’re never alone. You’re part of a strong community. If you feel like you need more support in your community,

Myth #18: “I believed I would never be able to go after my dreams. I would have to live halfway to them. Now I see I can do whatever I want to do.” — Jen N.

source;http://themighty.com

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Ketamine May Be The Next Great Hope In Treating Mental Illness

The three-year trial will test the effects of the sedative on 200 patients.

The largest clinical trial of ketamine for the ongoing treatment of depression has been launched across Australia and New Zealand this week.

The three-year trial involves seven research institutions, testing 200 patients who have not previously responded to existing depression medication.

For the first time researchers will compare how patients respond to the ongoing treatment of multiple doses of the drug against an active placebo.

What is ketamine and how may it be used to treat depression?

Ketamine is a medication that is often used for sedation and pain relief. It’s known to have temporarily disorienting or dissociative side effects leading to its use as a recreational ‘party’ drug.

To treat depression, ketamine may help regenerate the connections between the brain cells that have been damaged by mental illness, as opposed to regular anti-depressants which work on regulating the brain’s chemicals, such as serotonin.

The trial will be completely randomised with neither the patients nor researchers aware of who will be receiving the placebo or ketamine.

University of New South Wales Professor Colleen Loo, who is based at the Black Dog Institute will be leading the trial and has been part of UNSW’s research into the use of the drug to treat to depression over the past five years.
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Of course this isn’t the first time a controversial substance has been trialed to treat illness, with both outstanding breakthroughs and devastating outcomes checkering the history of clinical trials.

Anavex 2-73 Trial

Earlier this year, a world first Melbourne drug trial of the drug Anavex gave hope to those suffering with Alzheimer’s disease.

The trial showed an improvement in the cognitive ability of the 32 patients that were involved with one woman regaining the ability to play the piano and another rediscovering her arts skills after being treated with Anavex.

Researchers were cautious with results due to the low number of participants but the first round of the trial delivered substantially stronger results than any other existing treatment for the disease.

Although, stocks for the company did plummet when the 31 week results for the trial produced less promising results than the first round.

As the trials continue, it’s still up in the air as to whether Anavex will be the saviour for a disease that is yet to have any cure.

source;http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/

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7 Quotes That Perfectly Sum Up The Stigma Surrounding Mental Illness

The only shameful thing about mental illness is the stigma attached to it.

A lack of understanding when it comes to these disorders can leave sufferers feeling isolated and hopeless. Only 25 percent of people with mental health issues feel that people are caring and sympathetic toward their struggles, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There are many people who are fighting against the stigma associated with mental illness — but sometimes it can be hard to remember that in a world full of bias. That’s why we’re thankful for these inspiring quotes from some of society’s most progressive minds. From presidents to doctors, the individuals below totally capture the frustrating battle that comes with mental health disorders.

Just remember: You are not alone.

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These 8 Assumptions We Make About Teens with Mental Illness Are Dangerous – Here’s Why We Need to Stop

1. Teenagers Don’t Suffer from Mental Illnesses

There are a shocking number of people who believe that teens simply can’t have a mental illness.

In reality, though, we know that half of all people with a mental illness will experience their first episode by age 14.

This means that half of adults with mental illnesses were once teens with mental illnesses – but, more often than not, are not diagnosed until much later in life.

When teens with mental illness go undiagnosed, the consequences are dire.

It creates a vicious cycle, with 50% of teens with mental illness dropping out of high school and most winding up incarcerated (65-75% of juveniles in the prison system have a diagnosable mental illness).

When you say that teens don’t struggle with mental illness, you ignore the very serious epidemic of incarcerated disabled youth, and you discourage teens with mental health struggles from seeking out help.

Mental illness doesn’t discriminate. Anyone at any age can be impacted by these illnesses, and invalidating their struggles only perpetuates them.

2. If a Teen Is “High-Functioning”, They Can’t Have a Mental Illness

I did everything I could to keep my illness out of sight because I was afraid of what would happen if people knew what was really going on.

So if you looked at the surface, you would think I was a happy and healthy teen. My report card would tell you that I was smart, capable, and in control. But I spent weeks at a time not wanting to live anymore, faking a smile while inside, I was coming undone.

It wasn’t just my parents who missed the signs. There were medical professionals telling me that I couldn’t possibly have a mental illness because I was young and doing well in school.

I had doctors tell me that I didn’t have anxiety and that it must, instead, be heartburn. There were school counselors who said as long as my grades were high, there was nothing to worry about.

Nothing to worry about? By delaying my diagnosis and treatment, they allowed me to continue suffering in silence – which eventually escalated into self-harm and risky, suicidal behavior.

Plenty of teens who are considered “high-functioning” are grappling with their mental health, but their needs are often neglected because it’s assumed that they’re okay.

While it’s true that lower functioning can be a red flag, it should never be assumed that a teen that is high-achieving is mentally healthy by default.

It might just mean that they’ve become very good at hiding what they’re going through.

3. Mood Swings Are Just a Normal Part of Being a Teen – It’s All Those Hormones!

It’s true that teenagers can feel some pretty intense emotions as the hormones start to kick in. Puberty is a really overwhelming experience, as I’m sure most of us can remember.

But this is a problematic statement nonetheless.

First of all, it invalidates the very real emotions and experiences that teens are going through. It trivializes their feelings.

Regardless of where these feelings are coming from, it’s still their lived experience and adults should offer them support and guidance when it’s needed. Simply dismissing their struggles does nothing to help.

It also brings us back to the first point – that teens can and do experience mental illness. If we just assume that any mood a teen experiences is because of their hormones, we miss all the red flags that could help us detect a mental health crisis sooner rather than later.

Everyone assumed that I was a moody, dramatic teenager. And I was – I was moody because I was struggling with undiagnosed and untreated bipolar disorder and anxiety; I was dramatic because no one noticed and no one seemed to care.

We need to take teens seriously when they talk about their emotions, their experiences, their struggles. Otherwise, they will never want to confide in us. They’ll lose their trust in us, and ultimately decide not to seek out help even when it’s needed.

They will assume – like I did – that any adult they talk to will just dismiss their feelings

4. They May Be Depressed Now, But They’ll Grow Out of It

You know what would’ve been cool? If I’d “grown out” of bipolar disorder.

But that didn’t happen.

And though you may learn better coping skills over time, there’s no guarantee that any mental health issue is simply going to disappear on its own.

Leaving a mental health issue unaddressed because you think that, given time, it’ll subside is a serious risk to take.

Allowing someone to suffer indefinitely also seems unnecessary, especially when there are often resources available right now to help teens cope with mental health issues.

And when you take into account the prevalence of teen suicide (the second leading cause of death in that age group), ignoring potential red flags doesn’t seem like a risk that’s worth taking.

5. They Aren’t Old Enough to Know the Difference Between Mental Illness and Typical Stress

Even if this were true, I somehow doubt that someone on the outside could magically know what another person is going through, not having lived their experience or been in their shoes.

This is another excellent example of adults completely dismissing the pain that teenagers are experiencing.

The idea that a teen can’t know the difference between an illness and stress is problematic on two fronts. It suggests that they shouldn’t believe their gut when they know something is wrong, that they shouldn’t trust their own experiences and should, instead, ignore their pain. And secondly, it upholds the idea that they are defective for not being able to cope with this “normal stress”  – that they’re weak for not knowing what to do.

When I was told that my illness was just stress, I felt guilty and ashamed.

I felt like it was my fault – that I should’ve pulled myself up by my bootstraps and managed my “stress” like everyone else in my life seemed to do.

Blaming myself ultimately exacerbated the illness that was already ruining my life.

The reality is, it’s not up to an outsider to decide whether a teen’s pain is severe enough, especially when that outsider is biased. We need to trust teens when they tell us that they are suffering, and help them find the resources they need to cope – whether it’s typical stress or a mental illness, they still deserve support and validation.

6. There’s Nothing to Be Depressed or Anxious About at That Age

I was told – often – that my life wasn’t so bad, that I had no reason to be depressed.

This suggests that mental illness depends exclusively on circumstances.

But while circumstances can agitate an illness, a mental illness can impact any person, regardless of their environment.

It’s true that I carry a lot of privilege as a white person who grew up in a stable, middle-class household, with two parents who cared deeply about me. To an outside observer, my life wasn’t “that bad.”

But an “easy” life didn’t stop bipolar disorder from wreaking havoc in my life. It didn’t stop me from cutting. It didn’t stop me from spiraling. It didn’t stop my panic attacks, and it didn’t fend off my depression.

Mental illness doesn’t discriminate. And although our circumstances can trigger us (and our identities can impact how we experience these disorders), these illnesses can impact any teen.

Instead of invalidating someone when they tell us that they’re suffering, we should honor the difficult place that they’re in – and believe them when they tell us what they’re going through.

7. Clearly They’re Just Hanging Out with the Wrong Crowd

When I was called in by a high school counselor because of my self-injury wounds, I was asked “which of my friends” were also doing it – as if my pain were just a fad, something I was doing to be hip or cool or edgy.

Because my grades were too good. I was the kid next-door. I was so smart. So how could I be doing this?

Must be the crowd I fell into.

This was one of the most offensive things I encountered as a teen.

Telling me I was hurting myself because of my friends read like an accusation. I was basically being told that my pain was insincere, something that I was faking just to fit in. It took the worst pain I had ever felt and suggested it was all an attempt to be cool.

Nothing about desperately wanting to die really strikes me as “cool.”

No one who is suffering wants to hear that what they’re going through isn’t real. No one wants to hear that the worst experiences of their lives were just a trend they were following, like popping a shirt collar or wearing a snapback

Even if this were true, I somehow doubt that someone on the outside could magically know what another person is going through, not having lived their experience or been in their shoes.

This is another excellent example of adults completely dismissing the pain that teenagers are experiencing.

The idea that a teen can’t know the difference between an illness and stress is problematic on two fronts. It suggests that they shouldn’t believe their gut when they know something is wrong, that they shouldn’t trust their own experiences and should, instead, ignore their pain. And secondly, it upholds the idea that they are defective for not being able to cope with this “normal stress”  – that they’re weak for not knowing what to do.

When I was told that my illness was just stress, I felt guilty and ashamed.

I felt like it was my fault – that I should’ve pulled myself up by my bootstraps and managed my “stress” like everyone else in my life seemed to do.

Blaming myself ultimately exacerbated the illness that was already ruining my life.

The reality is, it’s not up to an outsider to decide whether a teen’s pain is severe enough, especially when that outsider is biased. We need to trust teens when they tell us that they are suffering, and help them find the resources they need to cope – whether it’s typical stress or a mental illness, they still deserve support and validation.

6. There’s Nothing to Be Depressed or Anxious About at That Age

I was told – often – that my life wasn’t so bad, that I had no reason to be depressed.

This suggests that mental illness depends exclusively on circumstances.

But while circumstances can agitate an illness, a mental illness can impact any person, regardless of their environment.

It’s true that I carry a lot of privilege as a white person who grew up in a stable, middle-class household, with two parents who cared deeply about me. To an outside observer, my life wasn’t “that bad.”

But an “easy” life didn’t stop bipolar disorder from wreaking havoc in my life. It didn’t stop me from cutting. It didn’t stop me from spiraling. It didn’t stop my panic attacks, and it didn’t fend off my depression.

Mental illness doesn’t discriminate. And although our circumstances can trigger us (and our identities can impact how we experience these disorders), these illnesses can impact any teen.

Instead of invalidating someone when they tell us that they’re suffering, we should honor the difficult place that they’re in – and believe them when they tell us what they’re going through.

7. Clearly They’re Just Hanging Out with the Wrong Crowd

When I was called in by a high school counselor because of my self-injury wounds, I was asked “which of my friends” were also doing it – as if my pain were just a fad, something I was doing to be hip or cool or edgy.

Because my grades were too good. I was the kid next-door. I was so smart. So how could I be doing this?

Must be the crowd I fell into.

This was one of the most offensive things I encountered as a teen.

Telling me I was hurting myself because of my friends read like an accusation. I was basically being told that my pain was insincere, something that I was faking just to fit in. It took the worst pain I had ever felt and suggested it was all an attempt to be cool.

Nothing about desperately wanting to die really strikes me as “cool.”

No one who is suffering wants to hear that what they’re going through isn’t real. No one wants to hear that the worst experiences of their lives were just a trend they were following, like popping a shirt collar or wearing a snapback

8 If a Teen Is Struggling, It’s Probably the Fault of the Caretakers

No amount of love, no amount of money, no amount of dance classes or violin lessons or summer camp was enough to fend off bipolar disorder.

A stable and loving household, whatever that really means, is not a safeguard against mental illness.

My parents did the best that they could – I love them so much for that – and although abuse, financial insecurity, or distress in a household could certainly be triggering, that is not the sole cause of mental illness in teens.

A teen’s mental health issues are not necessarily a reflection of their home life, nor does it necessarily reflect on their guardians, in the same way that any kind of illness could be caused by environmental factors, but isn’t always.

I think my mother said it best when she told me that I didn’t come with an instruction manual.

The reality is that, even when parents realize that their child might need help, they aren’t necessarily equipped with the knowledge, resources, and savvy it takes to navigate the mental health care system.

source;http://everydayfeminism.com/

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3 Ways To Conquer A Life Invaded By Mental Illness

One morning, ten years ago, I woke up and couldn’t move. I thought I was dying. Of course, I wasn’t, but ever since that morning, I’ve been on a crazy journey, fighting mental illness (depression and social anxiety) the entire way.

I can’t say that it’s been an easy road; it hasn’t been easy or simple. But it’s been rewarding, and I hope my thoughts can help you if you suffer from mental illness. Many people struggle silently with depression at some point in their lives, yet most don’t talk about it because of the stigma which surrounds mental illness.

Here are a few steps that have helped me, and others, overcome the pain of dealing with a mental illness.

3 Ways To Conquer A Life Invaded By Mental Illness

1. Accept the Fact that You Suffer

We’ve all heard that the first step is the hardest to take. The first step to overcoming mental illness is acceptance, and it’s viciously difficult.

Society and marketing have taught us that we need to be perfect. If we aren’t perfect, we are failures. I don’t know about you, but I hate failing, so life was tough for a long time.

I was filled with shame because I suffered from depression, and I didn’t want to be seen as weak. So, I put on a brave face and increased my anxiety to a point where I couldn’t talk on the phone without vomiting.

It’s okay to not be perfect. And it’s okay to suffer from mental illness. Once you accept that, it will be far easier to move to the next step.

2. Accept It the Right Way–You Are Not a Victim

Ever since I’ve started writing and speaking about my experiences with overcoming depression, a flood of people, secretly suffering, have shared their stories with me.

One problem, unfortunately, is that many of them accept depression in the wrong way. They feel stuck like a magnet to a fridge and think that they will be depressed forever. The good news: nothing could be further from the truth.

Depression isn’t a choice, but the way you handle depression is.

The victim mentality will keep you unhappy, and it could lead to a life of locking yourself in your room and hiding from the world, like I did at one point.

Happiness might try to elude those who suffer more than those who do not, but it’s worth the fight, and trust me, you will enjoy happiness on a higher level because you had to work to get there. And once you get there, you will be grateful for the tough times.

Never quit on yourself, ever.

3. Come to Grips With Who You Are

A huge part of my recovery was coming to grips with who I am. I am an introvert with a sprinkle of extrovert qualities. We all crave to be the popular kids, and I did too. But unless you’re a loud kid, who is willing to experiment with life and enjoy being around a lot of people, then it can be tough.

I was–I am–a quiet guy. Being the life of the party was never in the cards for me. It’s just not who I am.

I learned a lot about myself during my recovery. I learned baseball doesn’t have to be my life, even if it was almost a career path at one point. Just because I was doesn’t mean I am.

It may sound trivial, but baseball was a big delusion in my life. I played Division I, and my Junior College won the JUCO II World Series, and my JUCO inducted me into their Hall of Fame in 2010. Baseball was always a part of me. Whenever I came home to visit, everyone would ask me about baseball: How is baseball going? When are we going to see you on TV? Are you a big college coach yet?

Baseball defined me, and until I came to grips with the fact baseball isn’t who I am, it was tough to get over some of my mental struggles.

You are not defined by anything other than yourself. Be who you want to be and how you want to be it.

I’m a writer. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do. It just took a while to come to terms with it.

source;http://www.lifehack.org/

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What It’s Like Living With Both Mental illness and Anxiety

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Depression is like a sinkhole. One minute you’re standing on firm ground, and the next minute you’re falling into a pit of darkness. Depression is crying over something simple, like dropping a glass on the ground and breaking it, but not crying when something drastic happens, such as a family member passes away.

Anxiety is worrying too much about things we have no control over. Anxiety is like a river. It never stops flowing. Sometimes, anxiety skyrockets and we end up feeling too much, but it can also dry out. Then we don’t feel like constantly worrying, moving or being busy. A river never stays dry for too long — it always becomes alive with water once again. Also, a river will erode away at the walls encasing it, just as anxiety will eat us alive.

Depression and anxiety together is like staying in bed and skipping school because you don’t want to deal with anybody else. Then, worrying for the rest of the day because you don’t want to fail. Having both is like wanting to go out and hang out with your friends, but then talking yourself out of the plans because you don’t want to have to make the effort.

Did I work too hard on this project? I shouldn’t have put this much effort into this. Stop being such an overachiever!

Just stay quiet, it’s not like anyone is listening to you anyways. I mean, do you really think they care?

Alright, I’ll just go in here and pay this bill. I’ll be right out into the car. No one will be looking at me. Right? Right?

I don’t feel like getting up today. No one will miss me.

I missed the test today! Oh no, what if they won’t let me retake it? I knew I should have gotten up today. Oh no.

Look at yourself, do you really think you’re worth all the trouble you make?

I’m going to go through self-checkout. No one has to talk to me. I don’t have to stutter over my words. It’s a win-win for everyone.

Depression doesn’t just show up when something bad happens. For me, it’s always about the little things. Someone will look at me wrong. I drop something on a bad day. The weather will affect me. Even just thinking about something from the past will trigger me. But something bad can happen, and I won’t feel as affected. Then, the depression will build and just burst one day over something simple as shutting a door too hard.

Anxiety isn’t just something people make up because they need an excuse as to why they work too hard or try too hard. Anxiety is a motivator for many of people but for all the wrong reasons. Anxiety pushes people too hard for little things, such as a poster project in school, a practice writing exam, their looks, how they dress, what they eat or how they do everything they do. Anxiety convinces people they need to be and look a certain way in public.

Can I not just have one damn day where I’m content to go into public with just sweatpants, a baggy tee shirt and a messy bun? Do I always have to put on makeup, wear some tight fitting jeans, a nice shirt, do my hair just to go to the dollar store? Am I conceited or do I just care too much?

Sometimes, depression will win over my anxiety. I will go into public dressed in those sweatpants and baggy t-shirt. I will look like a complete mess and I won’t think anything of it, until I wake up fully, later in the day. Then, I will be consciously wrapping my arms around myself, shying away, scolding myself in my head for looking the way I did.

Can I not wake up one day and just be happy and content with who I am?

Is it that hard? Are you sure you’re not faking this for sympathy?

Why would you be depressed? You have no reason to be depressed.

Anxiety is just your excuse. Grow up.

Waking up every day is a struggle. It’s like waking up with an elephant on your chest and having to move around and act normal with that extra weight on you. Anxiety will never be an excuse. Anxiety is me. I am anxiety. It is a part of me. The same goes to depression. Depression and anxiety are two of the things I would never wish on anyone, even my archenemy.

source;http://themighty.com

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5 Things Parents Caring for Children With Mental Illness Should Know

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My anxiety and panic attacks started the summer before fourth grade. My parents had never dealt with mental illness and were as confused as I was about the disoder that was limiting my independence and changing the personality of the child they knew me to be. As an adult, I see how scary it was for my parents to watch me hurt and not understand what they could do to help. I hate I didn’t have the words to describe what was happening to me.

So here are some tips for people caring for children with mental illness.

1. This may not be just a phase.

This is a hard one because with children so much changes daily. Perhaps this is just a phase. But what if it’s not? It’s OK to hope for the best but don’t depend upon it. By acknowledging this may permanently be in my life, you are showing me it’s OK to be different and whatever may happen, you will love and support me.

2. Mental illness is not rational.

Please, understand when I am in the throes of an episode, no rational thought is going to calm me. The rational part of my brain has shut down and I am in survival mode. Offer your presence. Offer a hand. Offer a distraction, but don’t offer rational statements. These are often upsetting because I know I should be able to see things the way you do, but I can’t. Just accept I need to get through the next minute, day or week. Only once I’m back on stable ground can we analyze and look at better ways to handle the next episode.

3. See past my behaviors to the motivation behind them.

I was a strong-willed child to say the least. So when anxiety and panic threatened my stability, I reacted in the only way I knew how. I didn’t care who I hurt or what I did because I was simply trying to alleviate the anxiety. Children are not born knowing how to cope with mental illness. Please, be patient. We’re learning just as you’re learning. Take time to analyze why I may be acting the way I am and then gently redirect me to a more positive coping mechanism.

4. Seeking outside assistance isn’t admitting to failure.

It is impossible for a parent to know everything so don’t expect this of yourself. Sometimes we don’t know what is needed or helpful until someone else tells us. Don’t be afraid to reach out. Many mental illnesses can be managed with therapy and medication, but you will never know until you ask. The sooner, the better.

Be an advocate for me. Seek out a community for support, and show me there are other children facing the same issues. Remember, the outside support isn’t just for me. Trying to care for someone with so many unknown variables is emotionally draining and physically exhausting. So don’t be afraid to reach out.

5. This is not your fault.

If you don’t hear anything else, hear me say this is not your fault. There is nothing you did or didn’t do to cause this to happen. It is simply the way I was made, just as some people are made with a limp or born with red hair. Do not feel guilty you don’t understand what it’s like or that you feel helpless. I feel this way a lot and it’s OK. Know that by simply helping me cope and being by my side, you have done what you can. At the end of the day, that is enough for me.

source;http://themighty.com

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Mental Illness, My Life Is Not Yours

Woman raises hands as birds fly away

I notice you most when I am alone
Like most, I find you have been masquerading around my cheerful days.
Just when I think you’ve disappeared completely,
You’ve already climbed your way back in.

Look what you’ve done to me.
Do you like what you see?
This shell of a person I never thought I would be.

My conscious moves in circles around each conversation, every word.
You see what you’re doing to me?
You scowl, you shake, you don’t want to leave.

You take my hand and drag me to this place I can’t leave.
You snicker in the corner, as I attempt foolheartedly to gather my things.
I take my strides with confidence, as I head toward the door.
It’s so close. I can feel the air,
Seeping through the crack where it breaks from the floor.
My hand reaches out to turn the knob, only to find it’s no longer there.

I turn on my heels and find you there,
Reaching for me like a comforting friend, ready and willing to welcome me back in.
I begin to ask why but you’ve already begun
Your brigade of my sins and the Hell I’m in.

“You’re no good.”
“You’re damaged, my friend.”
“No one could ever love the thoughts in your head.”
“You’ll never recover.”
“Just curl up in bed.”
“Take your life from their hands.”

I beg and plead that you let me go free.
My life is yours, so you let me believe.
I’ve broken this curse you’ve brought down on me!

I run.
I sprint.
I drive gallantly.
I’m in a world where sun shines vibrantly.

The light hits my shoulders.
My life is not yours.
I am free of you now and will never return.

I am good.
I am happy.
I am free.
You will never find me.

source;http://themighty.com/