Live and Love, Talk Away

It’s ok to talk.

We know how you feel.

We understand.

Honestly, we do. We’ve been there, done that, got the t-shirt! We want to help you to realise that however you feel, you needn’t be afraid to talk about it. Talking about your feelings is great for you mental health.

I’ve never had anyone react badly to me when I have opened up to them and spoken about my feelings, in fact I’ll tell you about a positive response.

I currently study at university, and was going through a period of much self hatred and unhappiness prior to christmas. This was my first semester as an undergraduate and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had put down that I had a mental health problem on my university application and thanks to my friend I got the idea of speaking to the disability people at the uni and they really could not have been any more accomodating.

That’s the end of the story. You might be interested to hear the beginning and the middle. Bear with me. No, I don’t mean the animal!

So, one week I was particularly struggling to motivate myself to complete the worksheets we had been set for our seminars, and being me I was concerned about how I might be coming across as disinterested to my tutor. Consequently I decided to approach my tutor and tell him that I suffered from depression. The reaction was one I did not expect, as I was allowed to hand the worksheet in whenever I felt able to complete it, and the offer was there to TALK to him about how I felt.

Spurred on by this, I did the same for my other module, this time approaching the module leader. The module leader was excellent, he didn’t patronise me, he didn’t try to be a counsellor or say that he understood and knew what I was going through. What he did do, was make me feel comfortable, and asked me to keep him updated, not because he needed to check up on my work but because as one human being to another, he CARES about me. Just like I CARE ABOUT YOU.

People are out there, and if you suffer a bad experience remember that it is their loss for being ignorant and not understanding. Remember that there are ALWAYS people out there willing to listen to you, no matter how insignificant your problems are, whether you suffer from a mental illness or not, people want to help.

So come on and share it with someone, it’s ok to talk.

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About itsoktotalk

22-year-old who has suffered from and is well on the way to overcoming mental health issues. I'm just like anyone else, and want to support people to let them know it is OK to talk about their feelings. Don't be afraid to speak out. It's ok to talk.

Posted on February 23, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. i don’t like to keep talking about how bad i feel as people just think i am miserable or just not happy. they don’t even consider that i am suffering with depression. some days are good some are horrible, black and i hate feeling like it. when i know its coming on i get sacred cause i dont want to feel like it. i have so much to be happy about. been on anti depressants which made me feel worse. just wish people knew and accepted that i am depressed.

  2. We understand that people may just think you’re miserable and unhappy. We aren’t suggesting that you have to talk about it, merely letting everyone know the benefits of talking about how they feel. It’s perfectly ok not to want to talk about it, but we have found from our personal experiences that if you find the right people then you can gain something from talking about your feelings.

    It’s difficult for people to understand when they haven’t experienced depression or mental illness, just what we are going through. It’s difficult for us to understand why they don’t understand as well.

    What we suggest, is that you try and find people who have suffered from mental illness or are at least aware of it, who are willing to support you, alongside possibly counselling or other professional help, and talk to them, whilst letting your friends know that you’re not feeling great. That way your friends don’t feel pressured, and you don’t get upset if they don’t understand.

  3. Understandably, depression can become extremely debilitating for the sufferer, and as you describe I think many can relate to these feelings. The most important thing in the recovery or at least the management of depression, is the kinds of support systems that people try to surround themselves with when they’re hitting a particularly low spot. It’s a sad fact that many people do not understand depression or the ‘package’ as it were, that comes with it. But, there are also millions of people out there (about 20% of the population) who will understand where you are coming from and the kinds of things you are experiencing. Whilst it might make the journey a lot easier for us to have the people who are close to us understand the illness, the most important thing is to try and come to terms with it yourself.

    Talking isn’t for everyone, but, as has previously been noted, it is something which both of us have found to be very useful, even if only in retrospect. Talking about your feelings can initially seem extremely daunting, but once you’ve processed some of the negative emotions in your mind, it can help alleviate the suffering that comes with the illness. Most importantly, the only way you know you can help yourself when going through an undesirable period, is to try and find out what works best for you. Maybe those around you merely do not understand your depression, and talking about it might direct them towards a better understanding of how you are feeling.

    Part of the hopelessness experienced is just a warped perspective on reality – the darkness that we feel does not have to shape our actions. If we let some of that emotion out, we can really start to explore some of the core feelings that are residing within us.

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