It's Okay Not To Be Okay

 It's okay not to be okay

I have always been an open person, but when it comes down to how I really am feeling, I find it hard to say it out loud, however I always find it easier said and done over text and social media. I'm not sure why, maybe because I can't see anybody's faces and see their reactions, and that makes it a lot easier.

You're probably reading this because you suffer with mental health issues, you're having trouble loving yourself, or you're just feeling a little low. I want to write this post, not to talk all about me, but to help you in some way.

My Story

Let's talk about school and college. I always felt like I never belonged anywhere, I felt like no one wanted me in their friendship group. I was bullied...not badly but still, it wasn't very nice. I was very gullible and took everything to heart, if people laughed at me for believing something stupid, I was embarrassed and I thought and believed I was stupid.

At 15 I started to feel really low, I didn't want to exist and I felt like nobody loved me. No idea why I felt that way, I don't remember much from my childhood unfortunately, especially when it came to school and college, it's like my mind wants to block it all out. There was something I regretted the most and that was not telling anyone how I was feeling. I kept it all in, which I bought out in anger. The mood swings were unreal. I lashed out to the few friends I had at school and at home to my family.

5 years later I was sat at home with my Mum, and I got really upset and started crying and just came out with it all. I was angry and jealous that my brother was getting all the help he needed yet I'm sitting there pretending I'm okay. She told me to phone up the next morning for an emergency doctors appointment which I did. Personally I wished the appointment went better. The doctor told me I wasn't depressed enough to be on antidepressants and to have counselling instead. I also have trouble eating, he looked me up and down and said I looked fine. I was a size 12 at the time, I'm now a size 10 and had lost 2 stone in a matter of months.

I applied to have counselling but straight away refused to go ahead with it. I felt like I was wasting their time and I was embarrassed to get some help. A few months went by and I just felt worse about myself, causing thoughts in my head, harming myself, I won't go into too much detail. I went back to the doctors with my Mum because I wasn't feeling so great. This time round a different doctor. She really listened, and my Mum mentioned my depression. The doctor gave me a leaflet for counselling, but to go somewhere different.

Weeks went by and I told myself to just send my details in, see what happens. 6 months later I started seeing a therapist, and it is the best thing I've done. It was a 6 week session, but she asked if I needed more, so I had 12 in total. At first I was angry and felt as if it wasn't helping, but I stuck to it and I'm so happy I did. I don't get those thoughts in my head anymore, I've been a year clean from self harm and I don't get up every morning wishing time away. My therapist also said she thinks I should be on antidepressants but that was down to me if I wanted to or not. I'm not saying having therapy fixes all your problems, but it makes you see a whole different side to things and it's nice to talk to a stranger about things rather than someone you know.

What I Have Learnt

It's okay not to be okay!

  • I've learnt not to take everything to heart, if there is an issue, take a step back and breathe. Do not jump to conclusions.

  • Put yourself in the deep end. I didn't mention about my social anxiety because my story would be very long, I just wanted to give you a little update to what is going on and how I overcame and are overcoming things. When you're anxious, you're going to avoid that situation, am I right? For me it was going into town on my own to buy myself some milk for my cup of tea. I avoided this for so long, which I find the more you avoid things, the worse it'll be over time. I put my shoes on and I marched straight up into town on my own, and almost ran back home. That walk home felt like ages because I couldn't wait to get back to my safe place. But I did it. I did it the second time, the third time and it got easier. Now I don't mind going out to town on my own. Don't get me wrong, I still have my bad days but been having more good days. So yes, throw yourself into a situation you would avoid the most, it does get easier, maybe take a friend with you.

  • Learn to love yourself. This is so so hard, but accept the person you are today. Mental health is nothing to be ashamed of, or if you're just feeling down here and there. It's okay, no one is judging you. Nobody is perfect. Look in the mirror and tell yourself everyday that you are beautiful, you have a great personality and everybody loves you.

  • To get help when it's needed the most. I refused help for a long time, suffering 5 years in silence, I wished I did it differently, but it's never too late to get the help you need. I didn't want to go for the antidepressants at the time because I found my counselling was helping enough. But if you are someone who is suffering also, talk to someone, whether it's family, friends, your GP. If someone doesn't accept you for you, you don't need them in your life. I'm sorry but you don't need that negativity. You need to get rid of the toxic people as they'll just keep dragging you down everyday.

  • Take some 'you' time. This is so important. I found going off social media for a week helps refresh your mind. On social media these days are full of negativity, food posts (nothing wrong with food) and a lot of bitchy comments on Facebook over petty things. So I find taking yourself away from it all, and doing other things such as reading or going out for a morning stroll can be great and therapeutic for the brain.

  • Set yourself goals. This can be motivating when you don't have any motivation at all. Your goals don't have to be met in the week, or next month. These can be life goals. This helps you have a positive mind.

  • Don't be so hard on yourself. If something doesn't go right or you got up late when you wanted to be up early to complete tasks, don't be so hard on yourself. Tomorrow is a brand new day, it'll happen on another day.

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