When you have been diagnosed with a mental illness or psychological disorder, or suspect you are experiencing one, it can feel like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. But it’s important that you know there is always hope.
Many people who hesitate to seek help spend far too long struggling in silence. And there are many: According to the World Health Organization, more than 450 million people around the world live with mental illnesses. We want to work toward breaking the stigma associated with the discussion of mental health issues.
With proper intervention, care, and support, those living with these conditions can overcome them, regaining their joy and sense of purpose. They can get back to living the full life they deserve.
If you’re struggling, know this:
You are loved and valued.
We firmly believe you were born for a reason and have a great purpose, even if it may not always feel that way. It’s easy to feel insignificant in today’s busy world, but combat that by taking a moment to think smaller — consider how important you are to your friends, family, and local community.
Though you may want to be alone and isolated, the most important thing you can do is reach out to someone else. It will help you remember that you are needed, valued, and cared for. You may be surprised at how many people can share their own stories of dark times and hopelessness. But they will also be able to share how they overcame it.
You are not alone.
Mental health struggles are not one-size-fits-all: symptoms may vary by age or gender. Some people hide their condition so well that loved ones may be unaware they are even having trouble.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, depression often manifests in men as tiredness, irritability, anger, and reckless behavior. In women, it may show as sadness, worthlessness, and guilt. Depressed teenagers may be sulky and irritable and frequently get in trouble at school. Their depression is often paired with anxiety, an eating disorder, or substance abuse.
There is no shame in seeking help.
Many times, it takes an expert to help free yourself from the grip of depression, anxiety, and other conditions. Fortunately, there are so many physicians and specialists who know how to do just that. A combination of medication and psychotherapy has been associated with significantly higher rates of improvement in more severe, chronic, and complex cases of mental illness.
We want you to feel healthy, whole and fulfilled. If you are suffering from a sense of sadness or apathy you just can’t shake, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.