My Mental Illness Is Not Yours To Discuss.

Ever.

Photo by ROMAN ODINTSOV from Pexels

It’s not a tool at your disposal. It’s not a burden you have to carry.

They are not your stories to share, your battles to brave or your obstacles overcame. They are my life.

When you think you’re bringing awareness by saying my brother has …. my mother suffers with….. my my my…..you are taking away my autonomy.

Yes, big strides are happing to change the stigma. That does not mean my choice to share with who I want should be taken away. It is always my choice.

You want to be helpful, you want people to be kinder, you want people to understand that words hurt people. Those same words have ramifications.

What you haven't done is a good job of is telling people who I am without mental illness. It’s been my experience that there is a gravitational pull for people without mental illness to think that once someone is known to have mental illness every thought, decision, action now becomes part of the disease.

Before people knew that I have a mental illness, my illness wasn’t foreshadowing my everything. My decisions were mine and mine alone. Now I fear everyone asks themselves was that me or my illness talking?

It was bad enough when I judged myself but now I have to worry if every interaction with every person that knows about my affliction is judging me too.

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