This is one of those short but complicated posts that I want to write sometimes but never pull up the courage to. Time To Talk, and its associated hashtag (#timetotalk) on Twitter have given me a reason to, so here we go.
I’ve always struggled with my emotional and mental state. Over the course of five years or so, I’ve come to realise that I’ve a mixture of different symptoms of mental health problems. They range from rapid mood changes to inability to sleep properly or consistently, to sometimes extreme social awkwardness. I don’t understand other people, and I don’t understand my own brain.
Honestly, I don’t know what the fuck is wrong with me. I’ve got past the point of really wanting to. As far as I’m concerned, my problems are part of who I am now, and I don’t want a diagnosis because I feel like it would prevent me from accepting my own personality. I’ve learned to move on from the problems and get through to what matters – carrying on like it ain’t no thing.
That’s what I take solace in – my own agency to overcome what I feel are my own shortcomings. I’m by no means consistent in this area, but when I get it right it feels like I’m competent, and I can pretend for a while that I’m completely happy. I like that.
But you probably didn’t come here to listen to my specific problems. The important things that I’ve learned could help you too; talk to people you care about regarding how you feel. Try to find in yourself the chance to accept who you are. Look for positive things that you can do to feel like you’re in control.
Most importantly, never blame yourself for your own personality. It’s nobody’s fault, and you don’t have to apologise.
I have a lot of friends who suffer from mental health issues, too. Many of them admit far more freely to it than I do, and I try my hardest to support them where I can. Just being someone there to talk to when your friends need it can make a massive difference. My own friends have helped me in the same way. I’d like to thank them – you know who you are.
Finally, take 5 minutes to talk about mental health this week. It makes a huge difference.