"How are you so open about your battles with mental illness?"
Both of us get asked that question or complimented on our ability to talk about mental health so openly a lot. Honestly, it seems so simple to us now, but it wasn’t always as easy.
The solution? You just need to start talking.
The first conversation is often the most frightening. How will they react? What will people say? How will they treat me afterwards? If you think hard enough, you’d come up with a million reasons to shy away from sharing your own experiences of mental illness, but we guarantee the FEAR is more often than not, worse than the reality.
The more you talk, the easier it gets and the more you share, the more you’ll realise how liberating it is to have the burden of silence lifted.
Getting the thoughts out, either in journal, on the phone or publically like we both have, you’ll find it clears space in your mind and sorts out the thoughts and sometimes even helps them make a little more sense.
Talking about your problems WILL help you realise they’re problems, help you beat them and it gives other people a chance to understand and help you fight.
Not only that, by speaking about your personal journey with mental illness or by sharing your experience as a friend, sister or parent of someone with mental health issues, you are helping breakdown the stigma surrounding them too. Everyone WILL know someone, if they didn’t before, they know you now, don’t they?
You just need to do it, say what’s on your mind, tell the world what it is you think and be open and honest. After all, you’ve probably gone over the possible conversations you COULD have about mental illness a thousand times, so you know what to say, just say it.
We dare you.
You can follow Sarah on Twitter @Sarah_Robbo and Ilona on @IlonaCatherine
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