There’s so much more to mental health problems than “feeling down”

Hi I’m Abbie, I’m a 23 year old woman who works a 4 hour contract in a clothes shop, collects dead animals and tattoos.

I’m also a sufferer of Anxiety, Depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Borderline Personality disorder, along with a plethora of physical health problems, but with my physical health problems, I know that 95% of the time if I take some medication and rest my symptoms will reduce and I will feel better. I just wish that was the case for my mental health issues.

Society has painted two different pictures for mental health sufferers, you’re either sat by a window crying beautifully or you’re in an institution in a strait jacket writhing around with a sadistic smile on your face, that may be the case for some, but not all.

Mental health is wanting to reach out for help and speak to your friends but also not wanting to burden them with your problems, it’s your friends being aware that something is deeply wrong with you, yet you mask it and brush off when you’re dying inside. It’s hating yourself so much you hurt yourself just to feel something, it’s looking at your reflection in the mirror and being repulsed by the person staring back at you. It’s the constant emptiness that makes you want to stay in the confines of your room even though you’ve not left the house all week, yet it’s also the burning jealousy you feel when you see all of your friends out enjoying themselves when you’ve not been invited. It’s the intense panic you feel in the middle of a supermarket for no reason, the palpitations, the nausea, the trembling limbs and not being able to catch your breath. It’s trying to drown out the voices in your head by binge eating, taking drugs, drinking, gambling and other unsafe activities. It’s the feeling of not being good enough because you did not get the promotion at work. It’s the guilt you feel when you have acted on your irrational and intrusive thoughts and upset your friends, despite you being in a trance like state at the time. It’s the not wanting to seek help from the doctor out of pure shame- is it normal to feel this way? It’s just me, its all in my head. It’s the hatred you have for your body causing you to stick your fingers down your throat or not eating for days.  It’s the being too scared to go outside because you’ll panic and the world will end. It’s the intense wave of emotions you just. cant. control.  It’s the fear of being abandoned by your friends and going to such extreme lengths that you almost guarantee that abandonment. It’s the being impulsive and spending money you don’t have because it’s the right idea at the time and how you feel about that object in the future isn’t relevant at the time, its the being in debt as a result. It’s the feeling you’re a shit friend, the feeling you’re a shit worker, the feeling you’re a shit relative, that you’re a shit EVERYTHING.

And this is barely scratching the surface.

Don’t judge someone based on their mental health, it’s ever so hard fighting against your own mind.

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