When I was diagnosed with a severe depressive episode, many of my closest friends weren’t there for me. I was feeling like they were rejecting me on purpose because I was told that I am overly dramatic and that I am evil and not worthy of love because I only see the bad things that may happen.
So, in a desperate need to reverse the rejection and find support again – I went back to the same friends who left me previously.
I was desperately trying to prove them that I am still me, that I have not changed, that I am not evil as they may think. They didn’t know about the battle that I have been fighting for so long. They saw only the result of it and it scared them. They couldn’t understand how someone could battle something so dark while looking like they are living a ‘normal’ life.
I wanted them to forgive me. To forgive me for being depressed. To forgive me for asking for help. To forgive me for being honest about my illness. I falsely thought that if I can show to them that I am not sick, that I am cured, they would take me back and everything will be back to normal.
And even though I had still some friends who loved me, understood me, and stood by me – I was still desperately looking the same things from people who refused to give me what I needed: support and acceptance.
Mental illness is a heavy condition and fighting it might feel like climbing a wall that is impossible to climb. And oftentimes, others will not be motivated to climb it with us to see what we are dealing with, what the huge wall is hiding – to see us on the other side of our diagnosis.
Then, I realized. Others cannot give me what I need. I must to find the things I need in myself and move on gracefully from them.
The reality is, some people still don’t know how to react to a person with a mental illness. They fear them, they judge them, they believe every stereotype about them. Thus, they are not able to accept them and offer them the so needed love and support.
Realizing this, I became free. I started to appreciate more the people who were actually there for me, who gave me their unrequited love, guidance, and support. Thank you.