This is first part of some private posts which I have decided to make public over the coming weeks in the hope someone, somewhere may find help and comfort from them. I’m not a medical practitioner, always seek professional advice before doing anything that will impact your health or mental wellbeing.
Post was written – 2nd January 2018
It’s a fact we all see life differently. Our ideas and prejudices are formed by our life experiences. Every aspect of our existence is viewed through our own unique perception lens. Look around you and even within groups you call family or friends you can find yourself reaching a different conclusion on the most basic things.
The social fabric of everyday life is held together by general consensus. We have determined generally what is ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, but even within the laws we feel benefit all, there is a lot of grey area.
What was once ‘ok’ may now be deemed immoral, even illegal. And what was once illegal can be viewed as normal, even commonplace.
So if you agree with that, what of mental health?
In a world where the moral landscape can shift slowly over centuries or quickly over years, what about mental health? When do eccentricities become labelled madness and vice-a-verse? When should society step in to stop some behaviours and validate and even encourage others? We don’t really label people mad anymore, it’s not the done thing and to be honest it’s not very helpful either. In the past some of the greatest ideas that changed the world were written off as madness and those who come up with them delusional.
Nowadays, things that we deem unacceptable in ‘normal’ people are tolerated in those we deem as mentally disabled or ‘challenged’. ‘They’ are not expected to act like ‘us’ nor are ‘they‘ chained to a cell wall and left to rot. Neither are ‘they’ burned at the stake for being possessed as they would have been in the past.
So how would you expect to be treated if you feel a little low, depressed or even suicidal? What if you started hearing voices in your head or seeing things you have been told aren’t there? I would expect you would want to be treated kindly, be listened to, asked questions and even offered options of treatment. And on top of that have someone keep an eye on you and offer help if things become more difficult.
I am sure most of us think that sounds right and proper. However, less than you would hope receive such help. The fact is effective treatment of mental health is still not given even in 2018 and to be honest in my experience neither is effective diagnosis. Some people will attend doctor time and time again, and never be able to effectively communicate what’s wrong with them. Often because they look well, dress smart and speak coherently a doctor may often miss the subtly cry for help and who can blame them … doctors are not mind readers and they are busy people. They don’t have the time to tease the truth from us especially, if we are so embarrassed about ‘what’s wrong’ that we even often conceal the truth from ourselves.
I tell you this because I just made another appointment with the Doctor because I just can’t take it anymore’. My suicidal thoughts are increasing, as is the clarity of how I may achieve them. My thoughts are dark and hope has ran out. No one understands what is wrong and while I have my secrets, I can’t willingly explain them in a way that makes any sense. My need to make everything into a joke makes it almost impossible for people to see that under the mask I have cracked up and see little point to anything.
Do I believe the doctor can help? Sadly, nope! Over the years I have seen doctors and therapist. I have begged to be fixed. Yet after years of pills and recommendations I am no further forward. Over that time I’ve been labelled as ‘possibly bipolar’, ‘low mood’ or as ‘claiming to be depressed’ while showing no outward signs of being so.
I want to be ‘fixed’, I need to be ‘fixed’ but I expect little to nothing from yet another doctor appointment. Doctors are often the gatekeepers to the real people that could help and sadly even those people have often fallen short. If all I get again is words of concern and little action, I will be decimated and will once again feel totally lost. That is nothing new for I have been stumbling around in the dark for decades acting out a role which helps me survive, but never really live.
Watch out for the next post in the ‘Hidden Journal ‘ season same time next week.