That word. It is simple to spell. Simple to say. So that means it should be simple to do right? Wrong. Sometimes for people who battle with mental health issues that word is the hardest thing for them to actually do. If you talk about it then it becomes real. It’s easy as an outsider to say things like why don’t you just go talk to someone. I think you have to be ready to talk. If you aren’t ready to open up than therapy is not going to be successful for you. Trying to force someone to talk is also not the best strategy because that will force them to bottle up even more and resist
I know what it’s like because I deal with it every day. I’ve heard so many times why don’t you go talk to someone. Sometimes it’s just easier not to talk even though it doesn’t necessarily help. It’s easier to pretend that everything is normal when you aren’t talking about it. Talking about it causes those of us that struggle with it to have to really think about it and that’s when it hits. I know that it doesn’t help bottling up, believe me I know.
What I can say is that the conversation about mental health absolutely does need to happen without a doubt in this country and across the globe. It is something that is so terribly misunderstood by so many people. I think a lot of people live by the thought process of if I don’t physically see a sign of illness than it isn’t real. Mental health is very real and it’s a chemical imbalance in the brain. We as a society need to stop acting like mental health issues don’t exist and are not serious.
Today the fashion world lost an icon to suicide and it amazed me the overwhelming comments I saw of “Well she’s rich what did she have to be depressed about.” Depression does not discriminate against anyone regardless of your social status, race, religion…etc. It can effect anyone at any time and sometimes it’s effects are lifelong. Having money does not mean that you are happy. Another comment I saw was “she always seemed happy in the media”. She was a public figure so of course her public persona was going to look happy.
We do not know what is really going on in someone’s day to day life. We know what we see when we follow their social posts. We know what we see when we are at work with them. We only see their public persona. We see what they want us to see which is not always the complete picture. The only way we truly know what someone is going through is if we take the time to listen. To let them tell us what is really going on.
Then there are those that say suicide is just the easy way out. The next time you want to say that very phrase put yourself in their shoes and try to understand what they’re going through. To someone who has a very severe case of depression or any other mental health issue sometimes suicide feels like their only way out. That idea to them is where they think they will finally feel peace because they won’t be struggling anymore. I’m absolutely not advocating suicide but rather trying to get people to think from the suffer’s perspective and not judge. Is it selfish? Maybe because it hurts their loved ones but they are not thinking about that in that moment. They’re thinking about how to make it stop.
If you know someone who is on the edge and in need of help reach out to them. If it’s become a situation where you think suicide is a possibility alert the right people. Don’t ignore the signs that they are crying out for help in their own way.
If you or someone you know is at risk for suicide please call the national suicide prevention line 1-800-273-8255 if you are too afraid to call then you can text Home to 741741 and someone with the crisis text line will reach out.