“The real hopeless victims of mental illness are to be found among those who appear to be most normal!” -Aldous Huxley
I am the last person anyone (besides close family & friends) would ever think has a mental illness….
I had a wonderful childhood, the worlds best mom & grandparents, I got the best of the best in everything, & I have traveled more than anyone I know!!!! I never had a reason to be depressed or angry, it just happened…
My biggest embarrassment with being BiPolar 2 is….
I don’t feel like I have the rights to the pain I feel!
I’ve always been ashamed of my diagnosis because I know what everyone wanted to say….
& has said….
“You have the best life ever…. why should you be sad or angry…. You’re selfish!”
“You’re too pretty to be depressed.”
“You were too spoiled, you should have gotten your ass beat more!”
No I was very appreciative! What I wasn’t, was deserving!!! I didn’t deserve such a loving & giving family when all I could be in return was an uncontrollable burden!!
I traveled a lot! Between my mom & grandparents I took at least 3 vacations a year!
I was a star athlete! I ran track, cheered, tumbled, & showed horses!
I had all the name brand clothing, bags, sunglasses, you name it….
I even got a BMW at 16…
I received infamous amounts of love & attention from my mom & granny.
I had what most would consider a near perfect childhood!!!!
& I’m here to tell you that didn’t stop nor fix the chemical imbalance in my brain!
I was diagnosed at 14! 10 years of battling these demons!!!
& I’m here to end the stigma!!
You can be beautiful, athletic, & get everything you’ve ever wanted & more…. & still battle with your own mind every single day!!! Some days I’m happy, I can see my worth & potential! & most other days it’s like a little voice in my head telling me I’m a failure & will never succeed! The voice never fails to remind me that I am a burden also. (That’s always the hardest one to swallow, my loved ones shouldn’t have to suffer because of me.)
It’s been over 10 years since I was diagnosed, & in 10 years I’ve only learnt & changed just a few things.
1. I’m no longer suicidal, of course it still crosses my mind but I have no control over those thoughts… My kids are the reason behind wanting to live, I would never kill myself today all because I want to see them grow up & provide them with everlasting limitless love!
2. Triggers!!! I only know 2…. A dirty house! Or getting overly excited for something, anything…
3. I am not stupid!!! My mom still reminds me of all the times I’d get frustrated at school work, give up, & start crying about how stupid I was. I didn’t realize how smart I truly was up until a couple years ago..
4. & I no longer destroy whatever I get my hands on when I’m overtaken in rage!! I finally realized that one day I would break something I couldn’t replace & only hate myself more! (I’ve broken down many doors, shattered many mirrors, destroyed TVs, camcorders, car radios, & so much more)
All the terrible things I have done because of my uncontrollable moods are shameful! But I look back from today & see how far I have come. From the teenager who thought things would never get better, the girl who prayed daily to die, the one who never thought she’d make it to her 20’s… To now a 25 year old mother of 2, a grown woman who now can put her emotions into words, a strong willed woman who knows exactly how her screwed up brain works, she now knows this too shall pass!!
Anyone can suffer with mental illnesses… The rich, the poor, the famous, the homeless, white, black, Hispanic, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, teenagers, seniors, ANYONE! So stop judging a book by its cover!
Terri Lee Elliott