There’s a reason we don’t talk about mental health as much as we should. There’s a reason suffering people suffer alone. There’s a reason that I’m so sure our world is full of entitled people ignoring problems that don’t apply to them. There’s a reason I started this blog, a reason for my mental health advocacy, and for sharing my experiences with abuse.
Some of you read this because you love me and support my passions. Others of you read this because you know me and are curious. Or; maybe, you read this because you’ve lived through similar experiences, or, perhaps, you have no idea where to begin empathizing with my writing. What I think is cool about what I (try to) do, is that these posts and ideas can mean to you what you make of them. I do not get paid for this; I write as these experiences pressure me to share them, and you come to read what’s been going on in my head. That is all this is. I don’t write these things in advance, I write while my nanny kids sleep or are otherwise occupied.
I explain this because I am posting one day after a pretty heavy blog post. I’d planned on a break until next week, but then this really upsetting thing happened.
Remember that guy that blew me off a ton of times? When People Suck pt.1 came out, I went about life, and then a month or so ago I wrote that I had decided to give this person another chance? You all told me not to. I knew I shouldn’t. I did it anyway.
After a week of seeing each other, he told me we were moving too fast. For a few weeks after that, the excuses morphed a few times, but ultimately, he wasn’t feeling me anymore.
The thing is, while we did see each other, I was all kinds of triggered by similarities between this guy and my ex. My intuition screamed the warning signs at me; and truly, I was ignorant to overlook them.
Yesterday, as I was leaving work, I got a text from him. He’d reached out to respond to the post I wrote yesterday. The conversation that ensued was pretty disturbing and overwhelming. I want to share it with you only because it’s a perfect example of the stigma surrounding mental illness. Some of you, bless your hearts, will live your lives never experiencing people speaking to you this way. For me, it seems my honesty and chronic idealism make me prey to these people. I also want to preface the fact that I use some language in these texts (sorry, it happens when I’m overcome with rage), and I hope that you (family members) won’t think less of me for it.
Without further ado:
I blocked him after that.
Maybe you agree with him. Maybe you think my sharing this with you is inappropriate. But, my gut says this needs to happen. I’m short for words other than to say that this is precisely why conversation about mental illness and suicide is way way way way way way important. I can assure you that if I had lived my life the way he recommended I do– pretending depression doesn’t exist (and cat-less) — my life would be so empty, so lonely, so hard, that I wouldn’t have one anymore.
Please don’t stop talking about struggles. Even when people like him come after you for sharing your truth; when they try to shut you down, don’t stop. Get louder. Do not ever let someone tell you to be ashamed of any part of yourself. Ever. If we keep letting these people shut us down, this epidemic of suicide and psychological shaming will never end.
Keep talking. Keep screaming your truths. Be kind.