Thursday, 6 February 2014

So I've been single for almost a year now....My Contribution to #TimeToTalk

Hello!

So today is February the 6th and it's a day where people are trying to raise awareness of mental health issues and make them less of a stigma by getting people to talk about their issues etc. Now then, regular readers will know that I'm now very very open about the fact that I suffer with depression and am now on a 30mg dose of Citalopram to help me out of the absolute darkness that I found myself in just over a year ago. What does this have to do with being single I hear you all ask? Well....as most of you know, for just over 2 years I was in a mentally and emotionally abusive relationship. It was nowhere near as bad as some relationships are, that's for sure, but for someone who was suffering from anxiety, depression and just downright confusion it seemed a lot more mentally abusive than the average relationship. I learnt an awful lot about myself from that relationship and realised the kinds of things that are never going to be acceptable to me ever again.

February 13th marks a year to the very last day that I actually saw my ex to talk to and to...you know...have any kind of relations with. I found out a few months ago that he is actually now dating a girl that he used to call a "pyscho" and used to laugh about when she'd text him etc. Now then, this really highlighterd how god damn lucky I was to not even be friends with him anymore. I get that people's feelings change etc but he has a history of being a douchebag about even his closest friends behind their backs and then being a nice as anything to their faces. What a guy! Now then, the reason I'm saying this stuff is not to have any kind of revenge or whatever else people might think, but to simply highlight how fucking far I've come with my depression in the last year! If I had found this out a year and a half ago (which, it turns out, was a thing when we were still non-dating. Again, what a guy right?!) I would've self-harmed and gone further into the pit of depression that I had built for myself and I certainly would have blamed myself for everything that was happening even when I have no control over someone being a complete twat - everyone gets to choose how they act for themselves. 

I'm aware that being with someone who has depression must be so difficult to understand at times if you don't have depression yourself, or are in complete denial about your own ssues, but the key is to not try and make them happy or fix them or anything like that as you can't help someone with depression until they are ready to help themselves. If you can't cope with someone with depression, I feel that the best thing you can do is to leave. I may be alone in thinking that but I'd rather cope with the pain of someone leaving me rather than cope with the pain of someone sticking around who clearly doesn't want to be with you. I am partly to blame for keeping my ex around for as long as I did as it's a comfort thing, but I have learned that now I'd rather be alone than be with the wrong person. I have on occasion found myself missing him, but then I realise it's definitely not him that I miss, but the company and the emotional intimacy. But again, I've realised that to help my mental health I would rather be alone than with the wrong person. I need someone who doesn't lie, doesn't ditch me at the last second and someone who doesn't act like they are ashamed to be with me. It's so utterly damaging to your mental health to feel like you're an embarrassment to someone. It made me feel ashamed of my depression and of myself. Over the last year, with a lot of help from Doctors, friends who genuinely care and my family who have been incredibly supportive, I have learnt not to be ashamed, that my mental health is something to embrace because not everyone is lucky enough to see the world how I do and that I'm allowed to talk about my depression without fear of being outcast by "normal" people. We all have things that aren't considered "normal" and you shouldn't be afraid to talk about them. Since I started talking about my depression and self-harm etc, it's surprising how many people have come out of the woodwork to email me or chat to me in person about their depression or even to ask my questions about mine so they can find out more about something that they don't know much about. I find the latter to be a very important part of my quest to help people understand depression more. I think it's so important for people to realise that they don't have to tread carefully around the mental health issues as sometimes, being direct and asking questions helps people with depression to feel less alone.

So it's time to talk. Let's make the stigma of mental health issues a thing of the past and get people talking so us folk with mental health issues feel less alone yeah?

As always, please do feel free to leave a comment or email me if you need to talk. I can't say I'm an expert on every mental health issue but no one should be alone if they are suffering.

Until next time,
xoxo

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