Sunday 29 July 2018

#mentalhealth #theotherside

Whilst I am in full support of the campaign to acknowledge mental health is not taboo, it is not because you are weak, it is as serious as any physical visible illness and I want people to stand up and say i am not ok, I want people to seek help and take the support offered. I do not however see many public posts and support about the untold side...the people that live with mental health..only they are not the patient, they live with, they are the mother, daughter, son, sister or brother who have to live each day with an illness they have no control over at all. 

How do you cope when a relative or person close to you is suffering, obviously the millions of posts you see across Facebook tell you what not to do but has anyone ever actually seen any positive usefull advice? Because believe me it is not as easy as listening, popping by, showing support and often the millions of Facebook posts just make you feel worse, that you are obviously not helping because the situation doesn't improve.
When that person refuses to self help, refuses to seek or follow medical help, turns away offers of help and support not once but continuously day after day, week after week, year after year, they believe you are the bad person because you cannot switch that magic switch to make them better, when you cannot find enough time in the day to give to do something you don't actually know what it is they want you to do! What do you do??
You sacrifice your own needs, your own family time, your own emotional health to feel stuck in a big black hole...what then??? How do you help???
How do you come back from being made to feel like the biggest failure and worst relative because you need to say stop I cannot give anymore for something that never changes...when your own health is suffering, when you are at risk of having mental health issues because of the years trying and failing to support a relative with mental health issues, what then??

I know it is not as easy as chin up and snap out of it and I would never suggest Mental Health is not a serious illness, but all I ask is just for one second stop and think beyond the person with mental health issues as just maybe the people behind them quietly trying to keep afloat are suffering as much as Mental health doesn't affect just one person it affects the whole family and support network.