Hello, it’s been a while since I last posted anything. I’m happy I’m here again, ready to write, create and share. Today, I want to tell you a little about something that became a huge part of my life. The reason why I’m so not present lately – my mental health.
I became a prisoner and I felt good about it. My home was the only place where I felt safe.
The beginning of a mental health crisis
I think it all started when I was in high school. Maybe I had some troubles earlier but I think the real crisis happened in high school. I was around 16 years old so that wasn’t that many. It was a time when I had to decide what I wanted to do in my life. Where I wanted to go to university. It was a time I had to pick my future and no-one told me every single route I could take. It was like walking without my sight and it was scary af. I became such an antisocial person, so sad, and just terrible to myself. Don’t get me wrong, I had moments of joy, pure happiness and these were the moments I want to remind myself of. Anyway, the self doubt became so high that I wanted my exams to go wrong so I could take a gap year. Never happened!
It was something like as if making myself feel the worst could prove that it was the truth. Weird logic now that I write it but it made sense when I was in the mood. I had to hit the mental bottom so I could function better again. After that I always had some emotionless time when I did not feel anything. Nothing was sad, happy or angry and that was the scariest time. Desperately I wanted to feel something other than the emptiness that filled me. It was a cold, dark blue hollow I was carrying and it was fascinating me yet it was very dangerous. So many dangerous decisions. I think that deep down I wanted to be hurt or even dead. Told you, the scariest times.
The darkest times – university
At university, I recognized my mental health problems and I named them. Low self-esteem, anxiety with panic attacks and some kind of depression moods. It made me feel better to know I could fight it and it wasn’t myself being a terrible person. The times however weren’t easy. I had so many ups and downs and I hid in myself even more. I tried to get out of my comfort zone every time I had my ups time. It became my strength but the higher I was at a time, the harder the fall was getting. My down times were the darkest and the scariest. Firstly, I doubted myself, self-criticized and was angry at myself and every one around. Comparing to others made me destroy almost every passion and hobby I had. Always had in mind: ‘what’s the point of trying if you’re worthless?’ I was mentally punching myself for everything. It was something like as if making myself feel the worst could prove that it was the truth. Weird logic now that I write it but it made sense when I was in the mood. I had to hit the mental bottom so I could function better again. After that I always had some emotionless time when I did not feel anything. Nothing was sad, happy or angry and that was the scariest time. Desperately I wanted to feel something other than the emptiness that filled me. It was a cold, dark blue hollow I was carrying and it was fascinating me yet it was very dangerous. So many dangerous decisions. I think that deep down I wanted to be hurt or even dead. Told you, the scariest times.
Seeking help for my mental health
I asked for help a year after I graduated and it was only because my now husband encouraged me to do so. He was the best that happened to me and I remember telling him the whole truth was totally stepping out of my comfort zone and I just never got back there. I didn’t know what would happen but I can tell you it was the best decision I made. I couldn’t bare it myself anymore. I could cry everywhere for any reason or not reason at all. I had to hide in the bathroom when I had a feeling of a panic attack coming. The lower times happened more often and lasted longer. I couldn’t get out of it. Literally, I could just lay in my bed, stare at the ceiling and upset myself and cry. I knew I had to do something with it and in my up time I looked for a psychologist and made an appointment. Before the meeting I was very stressed and I told my fiancé to keep an eye on me so I didn’t quit when the appointment came.
I tried to get out of my comfort zone every time I had my ups time. It became my strength but the higher I was at a time, the harder the fall was getting.
The psychologist visit and a therapy
At the first visit I was very stressed and thankfully my fiancé was there for me waiting in the car. 5 minutes into a talk and there I was crying because of all the emotions I had to go through all again and talk about my darkest fears. The whole meeting was actually me crying and somehow letting it all go. We set up goals and the therapy started. I was so avoiding some of my tasks at first but then when I started to see the reason why I was doing that they became much easier. During the therapy I learned to talk about many things and to separate emotions from one another. I learned new habits and how to deal with my fears. What’s more, I managed to control my panic attacks. It was a really hard time for me yet so refreshing in some way. I went out of it as a new person and now thinking about it I’m really happy I did go to the appointment.
The iceberg hidden under the water
Well, I ended my therapy because I felt strong and confident about my anxiety. I learned how to cope with it and what works best for me. However, my problems go way deeper than I’ve thought. That’s why I’m getting back to deal with my little demons. I might not have that many anxious feelings or panic attacks now but I still lack motivation, have low self-esteem and simply cry out of nowhere. I know I need someone to talk to and to help me with all of it.
Mostly, that is the reason I’ve been so absent. Actually, that’s the reason why I’m absent very often. Now you know if I don’t post that might mean I’m just in my dark hole. I really hope my story will convince some of you that you’re not there alone and that mental health issues can occur to anyone. Trust me I’m a psychologist, what an irony! I hope that some of you will seek help because it’s worth it.
Do you have any mental heath issues? What do you do about them? What’s your story? Let me know in the comments.
Note, the psychologist I had my therapy with wasn’t the first one I went to. I didn’t have that much luck with the first one being the best one. I went to meetings with different one, but to make it short, I didn’t feel good in their company. They were great specialists but something was off and I couldn’t really open up. If you want to know more about my experience just let me know.
5 thoughts on “My mental health story.”
I have suffered from panic attacks for many years and after 3 years of therapy, I still suffer from anxiety. I have never taken psychiatric drugs but it was difficult to deal with everything and luckily I had my husband. But having him was also a source of anxiety. However, I was abused as a child, starting at the age of 4, and I felt very alone in my pain. This caused me problems to communicate this pain and the Art saved me. I was in my art world up to 22 years. Then love came and I had to enter the real world but it wasn’t nice because I didn’t know the rules. My husband is insecure and anxious too. He is very introverted and closed. I am very sociable and outgoing. I am very seductive in the sessions and the transference is often eroticized. I never knew who my abuser was because in my nightmares I never saw his face. I changed 3 psychologists but no one could hypnotize me, to find out who my abuser was, because it is too risky for my inner balance. I cry because I have often put myself in negative situations for myself. No doctor has been able to get me out of my comfort zone. I still suffer a lot. I often feel alone and have no one to talk to. I have no friends and we no longer have a social life. I live in a bad country full of nasty people. I wanted to get away from here but I was always hindered. When my father died, I had a dark time where a very strange part of me came out. I was no longer myself and I did bad things. I also cheated on my husband. I would like to be free from my past and from pain but I still can’t and by now I have also abandoned Art because here in Italy it is not valued. I help others but nobody helps me anymore.
Thank you for sharing your story. You’re caring a lot of emotions and experience and I feel like you want to deal with it so you can start living again. I believe you’ll find a psychologist who be able to help you in a way you need it. I know it might sound hard to do but I hope you’ll keep looking. I feel like this comment is your scream for help and I wish I could be able to help you. Know that I’m supporting you and I do realize that the path you’re going is hard and painful. What helped me during my bad days is keeping a journal in which I wrote everything. My emotions, situations that caused them, my thoughts about me, my world and everything around. It helped me to clear my mind and even for a little while I felt better. You can try this if you want and see what it does to you. If it’s helpful or not. I wish you the best and I hope you’ll let me know how are you doing 🙂
Hi, thanks for your kind words. I’ve been keeping a diary for a few years already, but it doesn’t help me at all. I also write, I express myself, but this does not help me. I was swimming and this helped me a lot, because I was able to express anger better by swimming and I got rid of everything and afterwards I felt better. This thing used to happen to me before with art but not anymore, I don’t feel well after writing or even after painting. However, I have already done therapy, and now I have applied but the waiting lists are long because there is the covid and people are getting all depressed. So I don’t know when I’ll be able to go again. Anyway, I thank you for your support and I also hope to be able to free myself from this burden. Thank you very much, have a nice day.
I know it’s crazy time but I really hope you’ll get help soon and it will be better and better. It’s great that you keep fighting. If swimming works for you then do it. If something works and is safe for your life, do more of that.
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It’s amazing that you’re sharing your experience with mental health struggle. I hope you’ll inspire someone to get professional help or to simply open up to someone about their problems.
And remeber, you are never alone during your fights! ❤