I have anxiety and depression and that’s ok. Stigma around it isn’t.

I was doing great with writing then life got busy. I have known that I have been stressed, having anxiety, and depression for a few months now and it is something that runs in the family. Finally coming to terms with it being a bit more than crossdressing and engaging with my bigender nature was one piece of that puzzle and it helped quite a bit. But now I am left with everything else that is causing me issues in my life. But this is not a post about poor Jessie, far from it as now I know and I can work to get better again. My depression and anxiety had been going up and down for months and I didn’t fully notice it until I couldn’t do my job any more. And that is a pretty normal story right there, we don’t always see it for ourselves. Google signs of depression and check off a few too many boxes and it’s likely time to talk to someone, especially if you find yourself checking off the same boxes a few months in a row. Mental health is one of the few remaining accepted social stigmas in society, we have a a tonne of stigmas but it is one that people seem ok with keeping and it kills people.

I spent years in role that required to to treat people in emergencies and have help peoples futures in my hands. I kept saying I was ok, I wasn’t. Eventually that caught up to me and now when I teach those same courses I am sure to spend lots of time of Critical Incident Stress and PTSD and trying too make sure everyone accepts that it is a normal reaction and the best thing to do is anything. Most of us have some critical stress reactions to something, for those of us who have been rear ended in a car accident tend to really be checking our mirrors at stop signs or nervous when the person driving stops a little too fast a close to the car in front. That is a critical incident stress reaction, the first cousin of PTSD. There are two types of people when it comes to dealing with medical emergencies, those intense moments with calmness around them, those who can do it and those who can’t. It’s fine to not be one of those who can’t, it may even mean you’re a bit healthier really. But the fact is that then so many years ago I kept saying I was fine, and I wasn’t. Yes I can do that sort of work but I wasn’t allowing myself to process and to not be totally fine, and that was the problem. I learned and got better.

As for now for about 6 or 7 months I have been up and down, and sometimes I think it’s a bad day and others I’m great. It always takes awhile to notice and admit that you are not totally healthy, in part because we can’t see ourselves and also because there is stigma around mental health. It’s no different from a bad knee, the flu, or arthritis. Mental health is health and if your mental health isn’t good you’re not healthy. So I have been talking to a counsellor which has helped. I went to get my ADHD medication adjusted and they put me on some antidepressants and gave me something to help me sleep so my sleeping patterns can get back to normal. These are tools for me to use to get back to being healthy. I have started eating better and working out and not only have I lost weight and trimmed up but I am starting to feel better. It is going to take time but I can’t be ashamed of not being mentally 100%, it’s a summer cold I just can’t shake. I will get there again but I hope talking about it helps in some small part strip some stigma away from it. And later this week I will post something more in line with what I normally do. But for now just know that if you are experiencing mental health issues, you are not alone and there is nothing wrong with us.

Here is one of many sites that have information on depression there are many more.

If you want some quick and easy things to do right now:

  • Know that it is ok to not be ok
  • It is normal
  • Talk to someone, anyone
  • You are not alone and most people have either experienced depression or had someone close to them experience it.
  • Learn about it
  • And work to get better, not try to be happy that’s not how it works. But taking a few steps in the direction of getting better be it talking to someone or actually just going for a walk can be a bigger step than you realise

I love to hear from people who read my blog, even if your not in agreement with me. Your comments may spur me on to write something else so please comment.

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