I hate asking for help. It means I am weak, and therefore like my parents. Yes, this is the way my mind works. Scary, but true. In accepting my Mental Illness, and in trying to Learn to Live With It, I have had to try to get more comfortable with asking for help, admitting that I am having a hard time when I’m in The Middle Of It All, and not feeling like a failure for asking for help.
One of the things I have problems with is recognizing when my depression or anxiety is an Emergency. When I had my breakdown right before my diagnosis a year and a half ago, I knew I just couldn’t put up with it, and that my pride was too strong to just commit suicide. That was mostly the reason I sought help– suicide would be weak, so I had to try one last thing.
Since then, I have been blessed with a wonderful therapist and a wonderful psychiatrist, both of whom are angels with dirty senses of humor and a lust for life. But I still find it hard to admit when I am having a hard time to these women, because they are so funny, so strong, so admirable, and again, I feel like a failure, admitting “weakness,” in that I’m not as “better” as I think I ought to be.
But at one point when I first started working with her, my psychiatrist said, “you don’t have to be suicidal or self-harming to be in an emergency. Three days in a row crying because you can’t stand the thought of going to work? That is an emergency.”
So this past week or two, between my mother and work, I’ve been evaluating whether I’ve been having an emergency. I don’t think I have, but it’s been pretty messy, pretty tearful, and full of more yearning for ativan and alcohol than is healthy. I did send an email off to my primary and my psychiatrist, telling them I was having a rough time generally, but that the migraine part of things seemed to be improving, thank goodness for (very) small blessings. But I am so lucky, in that both my primary and my psychiatrist emailed me back, and then called me to see how I was doing.
I’m feeling better today than I have for a week, as a result of a variety of things. Time heals all wounds, first and foremost. Likewise, having some objective validation of my mom’s crazy? Priceless. Just putting some good sleep between me and My Situation has also been good for putting me in the frame of mind to think about things differently. But finally? Admitting I am having a bad time to you, oh wonderful readers and commenters of teh Intarwebs, and to my shrink and pcp, and to a few selected friends, has actually been really freeing, not weak. Putting it out there, and getting so much sharing, or encouragement, or good advice back, has been amazing. I’ve changed my speeddial so my shrink is right after my husband, and the PCP and therapist right after. But . . . is there a speeddial for the intarwebs? Because I called this week and left messy, teary messages, and boy, did you ever return the call.