You Have NO idea.

Those whom I call family:

It's never been a secret that I live with mental illness. I've never lied when asked if I felt depressed. I've never pretended to be okay. I was in a hospital at age 18 after attempting suicide and some of you visited me, but then it was never talked about again. I don't sit around and talk about my anxiety disorder unless it's the right time and place in a conversation. That doesn't down play or erase the fact that it is part of my every (single) day life. It also doesn't mean that you can't ask me directly if you have a question. I know most people are under educated about mental health and mental illness such as anxiety and depression, but that's not my fault. I didn't wake up one day and label myself as an anxious mess, this diagnosis has been with me my entire adult life. And I'm okay with it, so you should be too. I am not weird, I am not unstable, I am of no cause for concern. Not anymore than anyone else is. I hate that there is a stigma to mental illness, that just because I have Anxiety Disorder I am somehow "not okay" or "strange" or "weird". I'm not normal by any means, but who is?! I am 29 years old and more successful in life than I could've ever predicted for myself. I have some very bad days, but that doesn't make it a bad life. I am functioning in this crazy world just as well as the person next door is, and maybe even better. I don't like that it gets talked about behind my back. I don't like that anyone has to be uncomfortable around me. You never knew before and treated me like nothing was wrong, so there is no need to change and start treating me differently. I don't have the plague, I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder, and I always will.

I have panic attacks, I have nightmares that lead to anxiety attacks, I have days I can't get out of bed, I cry for no reason, I yell and I am selfish at times. I don't like crowds, I hate last minuet plans, I lie to avoid plans, I bail on friends, I feel left out often. I don't trust anyone, I make mistakes, I have a terrible self imagine most of the time. I'm sensitive and get my feelings hurt easily. I laugh and I giggle and I smile and I tell jokes and I have FUN. Because I am not my diagnosis. I am happy.

I'm hard enough on myself without added (external) influence. Next time you have a question, ask me. Don't call my mom. Don't call my dad. Don't sit around and talk about me.  Read my last 55 blog posts, do some research, and check your level of understanding when it comes to mental illness. Because my feelings are hurt and it takes a lot to fix that.


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