So, this culture and societal discussion around mental illness is - in my opinion - harmful.
First let me say that I know I had severe mental illness for most of my childhood. The person I am now doesn't seem that way, but my entire childhood was extremely dark. I don't need to explain just how much, but it was. My mind was in no good place at all. It was horrifying, and very tragic. Demonic even. Very alarming.
With what I say and believe now, people can say "well then you never had any mental illness because it doesn't go like that" and that's your personal opinion. Which is fine. Everyone's allowed to have those.
But you never saw me. You didn't experience that part of my life. And what was the one phrase I use to say to people very angerly, offensively, over and over again when anyone said to me anything in the ballpark of what I'm about to say?
"I am depressed. You don't get it, you don't understand what it's like."
It made me mad when anyone assumed I could just change my fucking mind. It made me so, so angry. I would think 'you don't understand at all, you're not in my mind or my house or my life. You don't know, you don't get it, it's not that fucking easy'.
Well, I wish I could turn around to my 13 year old self and sit her down and say:
"Yes. Yes, it is that fucking easy."
Now I've had people say "well if what you're saying is true then you must just be one of the strongest people in the world then mentally".
That may be true, but... It's more a 'fight or flight' thing. Survival. Give in, or stand up and fight.
I've always been a fighter. Always.
Regardless the abuse in my childhood, I've always had the soul of a warrior.
After I tried to kill myself, I looked at my blacked out room I would lay in and cry and self injure. I looked at my dark, oppressive household with the yelling and fighting and negativity. I looked at my arms. My life. What did I do? What was going on? What was happening to me?
I was never happy. I couldn't think a positive thought (at the time) if my life depended on it (which it most certainly did). I couldn't smile, I couldn't see happiness or anything outside of anger and drugs to take the pain away or anxiety and stress and upset. Every single day, all day, nothing else.
I got angry.
I told myself this fucking shit stopped today. I'm done with this shit. I want the happiness other people talk about. I want the friendships and love and the life everyone says is so beautiful.
I want that.
So fuck this shit. This shit ends today.
And from that moment on, I worked unbelievably hard to do that. And my life has done a completely flip.
I think back to what I use to be, who I use to be, and can't believe it. It's almost like I'm a different human being entirely.
And everyone in this world can do that.
My opinion continues, of course, based on my personal experience.
I am extremely grateful there weren't these crazy discussions around mental illness and depression when I was dealing with my fight for my life.
Well for one thing I would have just been put on some medication I depended on my entire life and never figured out how to get above it and would probably be stuck in a place to where I could now never be without it. So, there's that.
It's my opinion that today's places and people to go to for discussions and 'support' for mental illness, to an extent, it's not a place where people go who sit in therapy and really work hard at turning it around. It's a place people go to sit and excuse away every shitty thing in their life with "well I have a mental illness, so you just don't understand" when they're not trying to better themselves at all.
I think today most people have a shitty experience and milk it all day long. All month long. They catalogue all these experiences and replay them in their minds with help from these forums and discussions and groups to further cement shitty shit in their minds.
Now, it seems to be the worst thing in the world when someone says "hey, just fight. you can beat this." Instantly, attacks about "YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND" and/or "HOW HORRIBLE" and/or "HOW INSENSITIVE".
...really? So, we're just gonna keep the darkness parade going?
We're not gonna allow anyone at all to give an emotionally empowering speech of any kind that says "you're in your own way"? No? Well, okay then....
Guess you want to feel that way forever then.
"YOU REALLY THINK ANYONE WANTS TO FEEL THIS WAY?!"
Yes. In this day and age, lots of people.
*huge gasp of disapproval from the audience*
Because this is, in my opinion, a victim culture. Not a warrior culture.
We cry about 'woe is me' and have thousands and millions of people to join that discussion. That's okay. That's supported. To continue to talk about how they've just got a mental illness and that's how it is so shut up.
It becomes habit.
Did you know thoughts and feelings become comfortable, and that becomes a habit?
But, that's never discussed either.
Did you know that it is possible to retrain your brain? Your emotions?
No. That's not popular or acceptable either. That's offensive and somehow insensitive.
What's meant to be a way out that myself or others share with those in the dark gets turned into this horribly offensive thing.
Which, serious newsflash, if you get offended by that... Life is not going to be a pretty place for you. Ever.
Geezus, life is raw and real and in your face and tough and painful. If you need to put metaphorical bubble wrap on everything and everyone and every word and every opinion... You're really fucked, and that isn't helping your problem.
Instead of people helping other people to stand up and fight and claim happiness and make a firm, conscious decision to say 'NO MORE' to the mental illness and depression and shit... They've got people supporting the sickness, and enabling, and creating groups and cushions and places that make it worse. Breed more of it. Send it deeper into your soul.
Someone is going to jump up and say "So what about schizophrenia then?! They just need to 'get over it'?"
No, that is voices and shit. That, in my opinion, is a real serious mental illness that doctors need to see and treat.
But emotions? Sadness? Anxiety? Yeah, you need to look yourself in the mirror and proclaim that you're gonna get over it. And work your ass off to do so.
To be fair, that notion comes from understanding energy and frequencies. Understanding that every thought you think becomes a real thing. Watching the movie 'The Secret' and researching. YouTubing sessions and deep discussions from public motivational seminars from Iyanla Vanzant, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Doreen Virtue, Louise Hay, Michael Beckwith, Bishop T.D. Jakes & so many more.
Record and download the thousands of free audio tracks with positive affirmations. Pinch Me Living are my personal favorite. YouTube them, listen to them at LEAST once a day.
Make a gratitude journal. Write down things you're grateful for every day. Force yourself. Start with your ability to see, the fact that you have eyes or legs or a roof over your head.
Look yourself in the mirror every morning and say to yourself, "Today will be a beautiful day". Even if you don't believe it. Say it. Repeat it until something sparks inside of you.
But, you know, there's tons of people who just won't do any of that. Because "I have a mental illness, it's not that easy."
Until you've seriously, very seriously done all of that and made your mindset firm in changing your ways and done everything all day every day for 30-60 days... You're just excusing it because depression and the shield of 'mental illness' has became so comfortable for you that you just don't want to leave that negative cocoon.
A sad but painful truth.
People love feeling like shit. They bathe in it after a certain amount of time. Anything else, stepping outside of their comfort zones (the comfort zone being the 'mental illness') is very scary and they just don't want to.
It's my opinion if the words "well I have a mental illness so.." are ever uttered from your mouth as an excuse for absolutely anything, then you have identified a problem and that's the first step. Now, change it. You see what's wrong, you've identified it. Now you set about changing it.
It's also my opinion that most things that are classified today as 'mental illness ' aren't. It's also my opinion (which has actually been proven if you look into it) that the pharma industry just wants money. And there's always money in a 'disease', regardless what kind. The more pills they can sell? Fantastic. The more 'sick' people? The better!
If someone doesn't want to go about the often times ridiculously hard work it takes to completely and totally clear yourself of your depression and/or 'mental illness', then sure you can always go get medicated.
Some people tried and still can't make it go away. Then absolutely, go get medicated. The whole point is to get yourself feeling normal. Perfect. Happy. Joyful.
What I've seen, the majority of what I've seen and witnessed was people who haven't done either. They don't fight themselves, they don't do anything I suggested or hell other people suggest. They just sit down and to everything use the excuse of "I have a mental illness" then of course "...how dare you."
Feels like I see a million versions of my 13 year old self everywhere.
And it's hilarious to me that people get so angry and offended by that shit. I understand when it's presented very offensively and hostile, sure. Depending. But I mean was it really offensive? Hostile?
I mean seriously think about that. When you're so dark and so deep into a mental illness or whatever and anyone comes along that says "hey, it's easy to get out of, just do this this and that. Hard work but it's relatively simple and can be done" you should be like, "...seriously? No shit! Tell me, explain, I'm gonna try it." But not. The comfort of the pain and the habit of it says "nope, keep the good stuff out" - some can even say that's proof of mental illness, I still say nope. That's just like any habit people don't wanna break.
Kind of like co-dependency.
Or smoking. Or drugs. Or whatever.
The biggest hurdle is, when I really broke it down inside myself and what I find with other people, when you break it all the way down... You don't want to.
You don't want to try, or heal, or whatever. You just don't want to.
Again, that's broken all the fucking way down. Asking a thousand 'whys' to yourself.
There are adults I know with children as old as me who when asked why they won't do something or why they can't do this or that for the kid or themselves or whatever, the answer is - seriously - "well I have a mental illness".
Are you kidding me?
Well, the conversation around that now makes it so you can use that as any kind of excuse. And anyone who says "are you fucking kidding me" is demonized.
Lots of adults with kids my age also use the excuse, very seriously, "well my parents weren't there for me and never taught me how to do that, so, I can't."
But you've just identified what you don't know how to do, so the next step is to go figure out how to do that! In whatever way you need to figure it out! Not sit here and use that as a crutch and excuse your whole life!
Now these kids are fucked up.
Gee. Wonder why.
And it's also my opinion that if your mental illness is in your opinion so bad that you won't be able to raise a child effectively, and you won't be able to do damn near anything... Maybe time to consider abortion. Or, if you're the man, have the conversation that maybe y'all shouldn't have kids.
That goes into a discussion of pro choice and women being allowed to do with their bodies whatever they want, doesn't it?
In my opinion I see excuses everywhere, and not many stepping up and just figuring it the fuck out themselves. Or at least taking the steps to really try.
Like I said above, maybe it really is that mental toughness. Because as I said it's a lot of when you break it down 'I don't want to'. So when you're laying in bed all week, the last thing you want to do is get up and open the shades or go and take a walk.
Just don't want to. A firm 'no' in your mind.
So... How do you figure out how to make yourself, force yourself to go do it?
Because you can.
It just takes work.
Being insanely strong, and deciding you're not going to let yourself be like that another minute.
But, you know, that's my opinion from my personal experience.
To be fair, the handful of people I've worked with privately who have taken it seriously and really applied what I've said have all recovered. 200%.
There was one girl I'll never forget, she reminded me of me. She said instantly the shit I did, got all upset and mad at me "who the fuck do you think you are" and "you don't understand what mental illness is then" using it as a shield, as usual. Going on and on.
But I love that attitude. Because I know that that fire can be spun around and used to save someone's life.
So, I did, and we worked and flipped it around and I gave her back the same fire she gave me (because usually they're use to people being all politically correct with them) and she respected me for that. Then, I got real and raw and honest.
Today, a good 2 years later, she finally admitted to her Mom she needed help and went into treatment (which she refused to do before), and she's practicing positive affirmations and meditation and walks and shit and doing completely and totally good now!
She doesn't use anything as an excuse anymore. She refuses to let that come into her life again. She did it.
And really, from what I've seen, if taken extremely seriously - as seriously as one takes (or says) their mental illness - you can, too.
But, fuck me right? I'm just some insensitive asshole.
I just wanna help save lives, and help everyone have the best and happiest lives they can.
Not popular opinions, but, it's in the best of intentions.
Like Oprah and Dr. Wayne Dyer said, "When you say 'I Am Depressed', you're calling that into your life. You're declaring it, putting your name on it, identifying with it and calling it to you."
Yes. You really are.
I just wish I saw less 'I have a mental illness ' and 'I am depressed' because people have no idea how dangerous those claims are.
Instead, affirm, "I am healed, I am happy, I am loved, I am peaceful" - affirm good shit, not bad shit.
Really. It does change your life.
But, what do I know?