Mental Health Issues TAG

I’m so excited, you guys, GWAH! Gosh, this blog is so very me, already, ahaha.

Any who, I have found a mental health issues/mental illness tag from (oh god, how do I link things again? *sobs*) Becca’s mental illness tag Sweet!

Okay, I’m gonna reign in my mood, now. Focus self, focus. Let’s go!

  1. What mental illness do you have? I live with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or OCD on self-harm and suicide obsessions and I also live with secondary depression….That came off the OCD, those damn neighbors!
  2. When were you diagnosed? If you wind up following my blog, you’ll be reading this information a LOT in the time that I’m active. *nods* I was diagnosed by my counseling center at university fall of 2014 with OCD. I was diagnosed officially with secondary depression at my first hospitalization at the end of January 2015, but it was definitely there for a good month, into the end of December even, before then.
  3. Who knows about it? Who doesn’t would be a better question, ahaha. Genuinely though, I’ve become very open and honest about it. There are some people who don’t know like within extended family, but I’ve been open to many friends, even professors, the UMB community (writing about it in the paper for instance), the DA community and already on here as well. Leaving a trail of me everywhere…with pixie dust in particular. That’d be fancy!
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IOS saying ‘Live to Love Life’. And yes, there is a note in the journal in the background that I needed to use the restroom. You’re welcome.

4. Do you receive treatment for it? I do, indeed! Don’t know where I’d be without it, actually :/ I’ve gone down to seeing my therapist once a week (although my recent lapse offered twice a week appointments but I’m doing well again now so I’m still just doing once a week). I also take 200mg of Zoloft and 6mg of Abilify. Treatment like exposure and response prevention (ERP) and DBT and mindfulness have been very, very helpful for me. =]

5. Has your mental illness stopped you from doing anything? Yes. That’s the shortest answer. During 2015 it stopped me from enjoying life and wanting to live. It caused me to override my values and act on thoughts about hurting myself and acting out in ways that I only ever feared before. It stopped me from attending classes in the spring of 2015, from studying and getting academic work done. It really ate up my life in one big gulp, but I put the OCD back in its place, punching it in the face repeatedly until IT was the one breaking down and bleeding. It’s actually a little graphic, but it feels sooooo soooo good. Some days are still difficult, and it may take a little more from me, but I know more now that if it gets anywhere near that dark point again, to pack my bags and head into the hospital. There is nothing wrong with getting help. It’s arguably the most logical thing to do in this illogical swirl of madness. Okay, I’ll stop on this question. ^^;

6. Is there anything in particular that has helped you? Dear god, yes. Art has been a huge part of my recovery. I started drawing again in February 2015 and that has led me to painting in the fall of 2015 and now watercoloring in 2016. Painting and watercoloring in particular require a great deal of attention and focus for me and that helps exponentially when I need to cognitively refocus my attention away from the OCD’s stupidity to something I actually care about. Reading has also been wonderful to do again, too. I have a bunch of books out from the library as we speak and reading on here is certainly a thing as well! DBT or dialectical behavior therapy taught me many things about positive coping strategies and better emotional regulation. I learned a lot from mindfulness techniques and grounding techniques. Again, I could talk about this for ages.

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Part of my identity, that I am not afraid to tell my therapist, or anyone, who will listen. It’s true, after all! Scrapbook page.

7. Can you describe what it feels like to have your mental illness? Well, that’s a little tricky. But I’ll do my best for a short stint of time, which will be quite a bit of an exposure. For instance, you see, when I was identifying as the OCD, the depression and the suicidality, I was often talking, writing or making art about them…until I found out that doing so is actually a compulsion of mine. So then I was meant and told to focus on glorifying life and recovery and talking about that rather than the nitty gritty details. But I think this is a good opportunity to show the different sides of OCD, so I will take up this challenge briefly.

Because I only really developed the OCD when I was 21, I had years of prior lack of OCD experience. I had to get used to getting stuck on thoughts, like, we all have thoughts and sometimes thoughts are unicorns shitting rainbows. But OCD is when it’s like: unicorns shitting rainbows unicorns shitting rainbows unicorns shitting rainbows unic- unic- unic. It’s this constant repetitive cycle with thoughts dipped in like Oh, are you sure? Do you need to check? Maybe we should check? There may be frequent doubt and second guessing going on.

In my case, with the self-harm and suicide obsessions I had a lot of thoughts like ‘Kill yourself. You should just kill yourself. Nobody would know. Just think how much better you’ll feel when you’re slowly suffocating? Jump off ____. You were meant to die by suicide. It’s your calling. Just do it. Why can’t you do it? What the hell is wrong with you? You’re so pathetic, so weak. You don’t have the ___ to do it. What if I want to kill myself and I’m just pretending that I don’t? What if I’m already dead? I’m not, am I? I mean, I don’t think I am…or am I? Crap.’

Unfortunately the OCD has led to a lot of glorification of the acts of suicide and self-harm. Which can make it more difficult for me when I’m dealing with more of the OCD, but especially so when I also start feeling depressed. Not a good combo that’s for sure.

8. What is a common misconception about your mental illness?
“Oh, so you’re a hand washer? Are you really organized? Oh yeah, I’m like that too, I can’t stand it when my M&M’s are in the wrong order. Gosh, I am like soooo OCD.”

“Yeah, I have that too, but it’s no big deal. These balloons are so OCD.”

“Oh, so you’re suicidal? I’ve felt like that too….”

*excuse me while I spontaneously combust in anger*

9. What do you find the most difficult to deal with? The relentless cruelty of the OCD when I’m having a bad day or a difficult time. It feels like living 2015’s dark times all over again. And I don’t know if I’ll make it out alive. =(

10. Do you have anything else you’d like to say? Well, I hope I answered these sufficiently and without getting too sidetracked. :3 I also want to say that Recovery IS possible, that it does get better, that you can get through this difficult time and I know that you can. I believe in you, even if you may be struggling right this very minute. The fact that you are reading this right now is a sign that some part of you inside wants to get better. Allow that part to flourish, water it, take care of it, and one day, too, you may be on this side of recovery where you’re sharing your story and inspiring others with what you’ve gone through (if that’s what you want to do). Stay safe. ❤

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I hope this post helps someone out there, if at all!! I hope I don’t sound too cranky anywhere, hehe, I got a little bold in a few places ^^; I wish you all a good day and to feel well again, soon. ❤ Take care!!

 

 

4 thoughts on “Mental Health Issues TAG

  1. Well first of all you definitely answered them more than suffficiently, your answers were great!! I love how open and honest you are about it! I also love your answer at the end because it’s so true that recovery is possible but sometimes it’s hard to remember that. You are so right about the common misconceptions thing, the hand washing thing is the worst! Always feel free to send me a message if you need anyone to talk to or a virtual hand! 😛 Thanks again for taking the time to do this and good luck with your recovery 🙂 xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I’m super duper glad for that! =]

      Awww, thank you, I really appreciate your thoughts, your creation of this tag, and your compliments. =] I will keep a note that I can contact you if I ever need it, thank you for offering!!
      ❤ ❤ ❤

      Like

  2. Some of awesome answers to these questions. I really enjoyed reading through them. I really connected with your thoughts about packing your bags and going to the hospital. I have often been on the other side, never wanting to go to the doctor or the hospital and accepting treatment. It is totally nothing to be ashamed of. When you are sick, you go get help, like everyone does. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Why thank you very much! =] And thank you especially for heading here to check out my work and share your thoughts! =)

      Indeed! I saw someone else who linked to this website and it really helped me out when I was going through these hard times: metanoia.org It says in there at one point how if a person were having a heart attack, they’d go to the hospital to get help, and how it’s exactly the same when a person is struggling with suicidal thoughts, you go to the hospital and get help. That really stuck with me a lot, although I, too, have been reluctant at times to get help! I was really shocked the first time I got hospitalized that I was even in so bad of a condition to be requiring that level of care. The second time I was hospitalized I went through a good variety of emotions within a few minutes–anger, confusion, shock, trying to talk my way out of it, and then just accepting it and relaxing. I’ve often been reluctant and then feel the relief of, oh thank god, I don’t have to keep feeling this way, I can get help. It’s a good feeling to get help.

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