You are currently browsing the archives for the stigma tag.

Observations of a seeker *update*

August 29th, 2010

**I want to dedicate this post to Leah, one of the founders of this site.  And, to thank her for continuing her path to wellness and not hiding in the shadows.  She’s given us a home here at Real Mental; a place to tell our stories, a place to heal, and a beacon of light in the dark world of Mental Illness.  xoxoxo

There’s something that I’ve always known about myself, and it becomes more and more clear with each passing year.  Certain things come more in focus.  On one level it’s good to understand yourself just a little bit more, it’s comforting to snag a truth that you know you will never unlearn.

Another level is it usually means saying goodbye to a particular part of your life, a part of yourself maybe even people you love.

I would tell you that I’m a seeker, but not so that I elevate myself above others.  It’s something that chose me.  Words aren’t the matter, simply a way to try and define the condition.

Being a seeker means that you will often find yourself alone even around other people.  Alone in that your mind operates a little differently.  Or, could it be we’re just more honest and forthright about ourselves, having moved beyond the fear of being accepted.  Either you get it, or you don’t.

There are others out there that are seekers, sometimes we even find each other and cheer the other along during times of darkness when we’re fighting the knowledge that seekers always seem to find.

Changing behaviors, improving ourselves is like turning an ocean liner.  You turn but you don’t see the results of that turn for a long time.  Personally, I like to see immediate results of my turns, to know that there’s a reason for it, not that I’ve chosen to suffer for no reason.  Or wonder if the turn was just a waste of my time and I should’ve just stayed in the dark where it was safe.

Why can’t you be happy, why do you have to ask yourself all these questions, why can’t you let go of the past?

Except, I can’t stay in the dark and be content.  If I could, I wouldn’t turn in the first fucking place.  I envy those that can stay in the dark, walking along the same path they’ve walked along since they were born.

The age of blindness is behind us, it’s been turning for a long time, the masses are only now beginning to see the results of it.

I’m not built that way, I can’t honor something that isn’t true.  My eyes are open.  The duration of a new bend is the most painful, the one where I scream and become angry.  Once I move beyond it, I know once again it is as it is supposed to be.

I compare it to the air after a hurricane, clear and bright.  Debris has washed away, new things are about and old things are gone.  A cycle that I’ve walked through emotionally time and time again.

Hindsight gives me the hope and strength to do it once again.  Friends that understand offer support and love.  They don’t question the process, they just love me through it.  Either it’s because they understand, or they don’t but they trust that what we tell them is real to us.

The ones that do not understand cannot be held accountable for their ignorance.  The anger they hurl is their own, ignorantly thinking that projecting it elsewhere, it will rid them of it.  Over and over again they continue to do the same thing expecting different results.

Changing the course isn’t a process for cowards.  The ones that act in spite of their fear, demonstrating courage, are the ones that successfully turn the ocean liner leaving footprints for those that come after us, hopefully making the path a little easier.

Army Looks at Mental Health Issues

August 9th, 2010

In an article entitled “Army Strives to Reduce Suicide, Mental-health Issues“, Donna Miles from the American Forces Press Service reports that:

…the Army is striving to reduce soldier suicides and mental-health problems by giving troops more dwell time between deployments, identifying tell-tale symptoms more quickly and eliminating the stigma of seeking help, the Army vice chief of staff said today.

I really, really hope it’s true. I spent 7 years as a military wife and experienced an environment that was very hostile to any soldier willing to admit any mental strain. Kudos to the Army if they are willing to embrace those men and women and help bring them up mentally and emotionally. I hope the other armed forces take note and follow.