For me, the hardest thing about having a mental breakdown was accepting that I was having a mental breakdown.
It wasn’t until my therapist answered something I said, by saying “Chris, you need to remember you are experiencing a very severe mental breakdown…”
I’m mental? Are they going to come and take me away in a white jacket? Will they ship me out somewhere with a padded cell? What’s going on in my head? “Ask same questions to Google” … It must be a brain tumour? Cancer even? I am almost certainly going to die. If I don’t die then everyone around me will die. Why do I have to wake up in the morning? Everything would be easier if I didn’t wake up. These were just a few of the many random and unhelpful thoughts that went through my mind!
I think (and this is only my opinion) that when you have suffered from a mental illness for many years, you become stubborn in a sense that you convince yourself you are one of a kind. You convince yourself that nobody can help you. That nobody has ever gone through or experienced what you are going through before. That you are a one off species put on this earth to live in, what can only be described to you as hell. So in my mind – I went to hell – I didn’t think I would, but I came back in the end.
So one day I decided to stop being stubborn. I started to let a select few people in – My therapist, my GP, my partner. And that was when I started recovering for the first time in many years. It’s weird, but with a mental illness you need the help of others to get well again. You need a good support network around you. But more than anything else, you need to want to help yourself. Only you possess the real abilities to fix yourself properly. More so than any highly qualified GP, psychiatrist, therapist, etc. You see the thing with me was that, I couldn’t help myself properly until I let others in first – Then slowly I would grow the ability to start changing my life forever.
“Only you possess the real abilities to fix yourself properly…”