The invisible illness – guest post

Another extremely powerful guest post from the truly extraordinary girl who wrote “Four Letter Words”

Bec says I inspire her, I’ll take that compliment as long as she will accept that she is truly inspirational to me. I wish I was as aware of my issues when I was her age. Eventually Bec will be part of 2day2gether I know she has helped many people with her previous guest blog post and other things she is doing, including coming with me to Birmingham to give feedback on West Midlands Combined Authority’s IPS (Individual Placement and Support) plans moving forward, I’m gunna shut up now.

Guest Blog from Bec

Mental illness, the ‘invisible illness’, a disorder that affects a persons thinking/behaviour. The demon. Depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, personality disorders, mood disorders, ocd, paranoia, psychosis, ptsd, the list goes on. So many illnesses and so many people suffer, yet so many are blind to them.

I don’t want to have to sugar coat things like a lot of people feel they have to because of the stigma attached to mental health issues. Living with mental illnesses is absolute hell. The morning light shinning through the curtains makes me realise another day of fighting has broke. I pull the covers over my head, i just don’t want to face the struggles.

I have a drink every night so i can go to bed with a clearer head, I say clearer because its never going to be calm. Not while I’m battling these illnesses, not even when i recover. I self harm so i can take my mind off the mental pain for just a minute and focus on the physical pain I’ve just inflicted. I disassociate because my mind tries to avoid what’s going on. I smoke to calm the anxiety down, and to reduce my appetite. My head stops me from sleeping, so many intrusive thoughts, so many memories, so much reminiscing.

Jon (exboozehound) once said to me, ‘rest, recharge the batteries and come back fighting’ and that is exactly what we all need to do, however we tell ourselves we are going to rest, do this and do that and then we end up hiding away from everything, because what’s the point in trying so hard to fall back down? The point is because you wont always fall. No matter our experiences, we need to pull ourselves back up, yes we will have blips and dips, but we need to build a ladder from what we have and climb until we reach the top. Another amazing person has said to me ‘you have to know your own worth, to be worthy’ and that’s what we need to remember. It takes time to learn to love ourselves, to learn that mental illnesses and our coping mechanisms do not define us. We have to believe in ourselves in order to be able to fight, some of us might not be ready to let go of our mental illnesses, I for one aren’t because I’ve lived with it so long and don’t know any different, but I know I’ll be able to let go in time, and I can lead a happy life, and so can anyone else with ‘invisible’ illnesses.

I have texts/messages from people who have made my life and my demons easier to cope with, who have been extremely supportive since I met them, some are complete strangers, but I re read some of those texts to remind myself I am worthy and I am strong, and if someone feels as though they dont have that supportive person in their life, remember there is always someone there, whether its a stranger or a friend, you are not alone.

The demons might win the battle, but they wont win the war!! Stand up against your demons, you are stronger than you believe, trust me when I say you can get through this. Find the strength and fight inside of you, and you can do anything. Believe in yourself.

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