A long time ago, the only way to cure a mentally ill person was to scramble their brains until they lost all personality. This wasn't actually a cure for them, but it made the lives of the people running asylums much easier. Today, we are much more knowledgeable about behavioral health, but there are still a lot of stigmas and misconceptions. I have only experienced depression, so I will only describe something that I know. So here are 7 things I wish I could tell everyone about depression.
1. I can't just "get over it"
If only it was that easy, Deborah.
2. Yoga is not a cure-all.
This one comes in many forms. Whether it's yoga, eating healthy, journaling, coloring, religion, etc. Yes, these work for a lot of people, but it isn't a cure-all.
3. My medicine does NOT turn me into a zombie.
Actually, my medicine does what it's supposed to do, help me. Psychiatric drugs have this stigma because everyone is different and it often takes a few tries to find the combination of medicines that are the best for you. My pills don't take away my creativity or anything like that. They just help me out of my lows.
4. I am more than my depression.
I'm an intersectional feminist. My favorite color is purple and I hate bananas. I've loved books since I was little and I'm a proud older sister to three wonderful brothers and sister. Yes, my depression is something I have to manage, but it does not define me.
5. Suicide and Self-harm are nothing to joke about.
The most terrifying thing I've ever experienced is craving death. Self-harm was something I struggled with for years, and I'm reminded of it every summer when I try to wear shorts. There are something you just don't joke about. This is one of them.
6. I'm not fragile.
Sometimes, yes, I need to care for myself, but I am just as strong as anyone else. You aren't going to say anything that will send me into a down spiral. I'm just a normal person.
7. It's more common than you think.
According to Mental Health America, 1 in 5 adults has a mental health condition. That's over 40 million Americans. Mental Health is stigmatized, so we are all scared to talk about it, but the truth is it's more common than most think and talking about it can only help the people struggling with it.
So If you have may think you have a mental health condition, please seek help. If you are contemplating self-harm or suicide. Please call the National Suicide Hotline immediately at 1-800-273-8255.
Remember, don't ever be ashamed of yourself. You are perfect just as you are. If that means dealing with a mental illness, then you are all the more stronger for rising to the challenge.