Love and support are essential for recovery from mental illness, trauma and addiction

TRIGGER WARNING: suicide

I hope this doesn’t come across as too ‘rant-y’ but it’s an issue I feel strongly about, based on my own experiences and from the experiences of others in similar situations, i.e. alone with a lack or absence of support.

Recovery from either mental illness, trauma or addiction is near impossible or completely impossible without love and support.  I know that ‘depression recovery people’ don’t like to hear the truth, but every person I’ve known that has claimed to have recovered did not do so alone.  Such people always had something or rather, someone to live for, whether it was their children, a romantic partner or a close circle of good friends (and I’m not referring to ‘online’ friends or ‘online’ support).  I’ve had so many instances where I’ve been lectured on how I should love myself or do X, Y and Z by such people and I’m honestly so tired of it that I can’t even be nice about it anymore.  I honestly don’t think that people with love and support in their lives understand what it’s like not to have those things at the time when you need them the most.  There is a total lack of empathy from people who do not understand how awful loneliness and social isolation are when you’re dealing with mental illness.

I’m kind of tired of only using myself as an example, so I’ll talk about my best friend, L for a minute.  She’s dealing with depression, anxiety and her dad’s serious illness.  She loves her parents, but she is bearing the full brunt of caring for them and she’s doing it without any support.  Meanwhile, her brother who has loads of friends and is married is very critical of her for how she’s dealing with it, but he doesn’t understand how lonely she is and how she doesn’t have the love and support of a partner through very difficult times.   I’m sure he’s just as worried about his dad as L is, but the difference is that he has a partner to support him and far fewer struggles with mental illness.

Loneliness kills and no one should be telling anyone to accept it, as it is going against our very wiring as a social species.  Combined with mental health problems and / or addiction, loneliness WILL kill you one way or another.  Loneliness doesn’t necessarily equate to being alone and single, as it also applies to people who have people in their lives who they have to hide their illnesses or addictions from, because they think they won’t understand.  This is most likely the reason why there have been many famous people committing suicide over the past few years, such as Robin Williams, Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell.

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In my case, I’m basically fucked.   Suicide is inevitable for me as I see absolutely no future for myself without some sort of intervention and major life change.  I’m not sad about it,  nor do I want pity or to be fed bullshit such as “It will get better” or “You are loved”.  Such words are meaningless to me, as are those stupid inspirational memes that are all over social media; words on a screen.  I just wish people who are fortunate enough to have love and support in their lives would stop fucking lecturing me and others in my situation about what we should and shouldn’t be doing.  At the end of the day, there is no help and I just want to die, but I also want to be heard.

To have any chance of recovery, you need a reason or reasons to recover FOR, not just false hope or ‘more of the same’ plus the perils and pitfalls of aging.

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5 Responses to Love and support are essential for recovery from mental illness, trauma and addiction

  1. Vihani says:

    This sounds harsh, but as a person who’s been there i just agree with what you have highlighted in this. All of us need a REASON. A reason that can hit us hard enough to refocus on the positive side of life.

    But i must tell you this as well. We never know what future holds and beautiful things happen when we least expect them! It’s just a matter of time until we get there. Time is everything right? It’s time which put you into this state of mind. And all thats needed for another change the same. TIME!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sour Girl says:

      I kind of do know what the future holds based on a lifetime of pain and struggling…more of the same plus aging and more loneliness, despair and isolation. Old age isn’t something I want for myself and it’s not something I could ever look forward to, unless I’d got to experience the same things most people experience (love, companionship,, fitting in, the chance to start a family, a career, etc). Thank you for your comment anyway though.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Vihani says:

        This is an article i had saved in my phone to read whenever i reached a point to really commit suicide. Just sharing this with you with the hope it might help you. 👇

        It’s about 7 Powerful Quotes For When You Feel Lost In Life

        There are moments in our lives where we feel utterly and entirely lost. There are no clear directions or paths for us to take, just one big ball of confusion without an instruction manual or a tutorial as to how to “live.”

        This is more than okay, for we all become lost in life every now and then. Sometimes it’s better to surrender yourself to the universe and let the world show you your next adventure.

        The next time you feel like you’re completely lost, remembering these quotes could save you a lot of trouble and time the next time it happens to you!

        1. “You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.”

        If you are constantly looking back on the past, then you can never truly live in the present. You must keep moving forward in your life no matter how lost you feel. Now’s the time for you to go out there and discover new and amazing things you could be enjoying!

        2. “Sometimes you need to talk to a three-year-old just so you can understand life again.”

        This means that sometimes adults too often let the serious things in life suck all the joy and fun away from their lives. Sometimes we need to have a quick chat with the younger side of ourselves to revisit what it means to live again. Let yourself be a kid every now and then, not everything needs to be so critical all of the time.

        3. “Sometimes you need to step outside, get some air, and remind yourself of who you are and where you want to be.”

        This is pretty self-explanatory. However, there are times where the answer is not always clear, reminding us of who we are, what we love doing, and where we would rather be right now. Sometimes the answer for a new direction or path is usually the obvious one right in front of us.

        4. “If it doesn’t open, it’s not your door.”

        If your calling isn’t exactly calling back to you, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Perhaps it was something that you really wanted to try but didn’t work out. That’s alright, there are bound to be other doors that you can open, that are made to be opened specifically by you. Never stop finding new opportunities to test yourself!

        5. “If you don’t like where you are, move. You are not a tree.”

        If you are not satisfied with where you are living, then be that change you so desire. Find the place that is just right for you, and stop at nothing to achieve those dreams and goals. If there is nothing holding you back and you have the means to go and fight for what you want most, do it. Follow your gut instincts!

        6. “Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.”

        One of the most important lessons in life that we must learn is how to accept the good times, along with the bad times, in our lives. Sometimes, the bad things that happened to us, happened for a reason, giving us a new path to go on for newer and better things. It may be hard, but find that new direction to embark on, take it, and never stop moving forward.

        7. “Always remember that your present situation is not your final destination. The best is yet to come.”

        Remember that not everything is permanent. Being temporary can actually be a very beautiful thing. There is always another path that can lead you to something much better or something that you’ve never experienced before. Be open to the limitless possibilities of the world around you!

        It’s okay to feel lost, just remember that you have more than one path that lies ahead of you! The world will always give you the chance to try something new!

        Like

  2. cafebedouin says:

    I remember going through BUD/S training. It’s the hard preliminary training to become a U.S. Navy SEAL. The one thing I learned going through that process is that when you are in pain, you are out in some freezing surf not knowing when this training exercise (they call them evolutions) was going to end and you start thinking of all the evolutions to come, it’s becomes very hard. The only thing that helped me was to narrow my focus. Do I have enough strength to last in the cold a minute more? When that minute was up, how about this next one? Can I last five? Can I get through this evolution? The next evolution is starting, can I get through it?

    Life is always changing, and you can’t live it all at once. If it is bad now, give it five minutes. Then, five more. If you narrow your focus when it is hard, it is a little easier to bear.

    The only guarantee is that things will change. But, maybe it’ll change in a way that’s good for you.

    Two years ago, I was taking care of an elderly relative. It was very difficult, and I got through it by getting through minutes, hours, or days (whatever I felt I could handle at that moment) and eventually, the situation changed for the better, even though it was hard to see how at the time.

    Anyway, it sounds like you are having a tough time. This apuroach has helped me through tough times. I thought I’d mention it in case it might be helpful to you.

    Be well.

    Like

  3. You have been heard.

    Liked by 1 person

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