Hello and happy Friday. I should have posted this a long time ago and I didn’t because a part of me felt that it wasn’t ready. That’s the truth. The truth isn’t that I didn’t have time or that I hadn’t gotten this idea or I didn’t know just how to present it to you. Those are excuses. The truth is that it’s easier to talk about stuff when we’re not experiencing it, but it’s a whole other story when the examples are given in the first person.
Mental health had been a concept that I was familiar with and that I knew of because someone in my immediate surroundings had experienced issues with it. Because someone in my immediate surroundings had suffered from a mental disorder. Maybe because I was aware of some symptoms, it wasn’t that hard for me to realize that I had a problem and that I needed help. I’d always known that I was a very anxious person. Every time I had to deal with a new situation that would alter my routine, I’d struggle, I’d have difficulty falling asleep. I’ve always thought bad things are bound to happen when I don’t do things the way I’ve always done them, but my anxiety got to a point where I could barely function.
I was trying to make it in the United States and one day I felt so hopeless the only thing I could do was pack my bags and buy tickets for the following day. I always thought that it was unrealistic when shows or movies had people do that, but if you have the Delta app on your phone and enough money in your credit card it’s possible. That day I had to tell the people closest to me what had happened, and I posted on Facebook about it. Getting home made things somewhat better but I was still feeling miserable. I had depression, after all.
I started going to therapy the week after I started working at a new school and told my mom and my sister that I wanted to quit. I feel like in some sessions my therapist will tell me things that resonate so much with me they’re like breakthroughs. Some other days we just talk, for forty-five minutes. And I don’t make a huge discovery but I feel better.
The other day one of my Facebook friends and former classmates in university published a post that was very similar to mine, but she said sometimes she didn’t have someone to talk to because she’d pushed friends away and her parents, though loving and caring, couldn’t really help. I feel lucky to have people who will listen to me. I feel lucky that my sister studies psychology and doesn’t sugar coat things, that she told me “you need help” and told me the name of the person who’s now my psychoanalyst. I feel lucky because I have you, my sweet readers, and I have these blank pages I can fill out with whatever my heart desires. But something I’ve come to understand through therapy is that having people around is not enough.
Professionals in mental health exist for a reason. They know how to help people who are struggling. They are not all psychiatrists or psychoanalysts. They don’t all believe that medication is the best way to help a person, and they don’t all charge an insane amount of money per session. There are even platforms nowadays when you can get therapy online, and if you think that could help you more than the act of going to someone’s office and talking in person to them, then you should try it.
Every day I see more and more people in my social circles opening up about their struggles when it comes to mental health, and even though that’s amazing in terms of raising awareness and coming to terms with the fact that something is wrong, I always insist: get professional help.
Now if you’d want to share some thoughts in the comments below, you’re more than welcome to do so.
Love, Miss Camila