Living with mental health problems can already make you feel like you’re trapped by yourself. You convince yourself that no one could possibly understand the nonsensical brain rave that’s happening inside your own head. You can feel ashamed, scared, terrified that your brain is a uniquely baffling and fucked up organ compared to a population of ‘normally’ functioning human people. This is just another on the long list of rational fears that we live with. The mental health afflicted mind can be predisposed to introversion, an unwillingness to share, a fear to rationalise your the weirdness happening in your own frantic cranium.
If there is anything I have learnt from being on twitter for all these years, it’s that if you drop two hula hoops into a coffee it doesn’t look anything like an owl. It just ruins your fucking coffee. Oh, and that talking can be fucking magical. Trying to quantify the myriad of ridiculous thoughts running through your brain by yourself can be one of the most worrying things you can do. We’ve all sat and googled our symptoms when we hurt our leg or got a rash, but when you start to self diagnose your own mental illness through the internet, you will convince yourself that you are a one bad day away from imploding into yourself like a black hole appearing in a ham factory. That metaphor was terrible. Sorry. Imploding in on yourself like a… owl… in a…. fuck off you know what I mean with this.
Talking about my problems online, sharing my experiences, reading other’s experiences, listening to people, it convinced me to take my problem seriously. To go to a doctor, to face my fears, to admit that my brain chemistry is wired like a toddler got their hands on a pair of apple headphones, that my amygdala is pretty sure everything in the world is trying to murder me, so panics at the drop of a hat. It took me a while to realise that you don’t have to be ashamed of the way your brain works, it’s not a life choice, this is just who you are, and you can control it, you can learn to battle it, you can wrestle into submission.
If you feel like you need help, see your doctor, or talk to many of the charities available to you. You can try meditation, CBT, medication, what ever you and your doctor thinks is best for you. You can go for a run, or spend an evening colouring in or just write your thoughts down. I have endless word documents filled with ramblings that have expelled themselves from my brain. I have no intention on ever posting them, but seeing the words in front of you, reading through your own thoughts through in bizarre detail, can really help. Talk to your friends, talk to your partner, talk to the dog, just vocalising your turmoil can be a major turning point in how you approach these situations. Yes, it will still be utterly shit on some days, but you now know that you are not alone, you’re not the only one suffering with this, and there are thousands of us willing to chat about it. We are all in this shit together, so let’s kick its arse.