I started seeing a therapist last summer. There I said it. That is not something I ever thought I would say in my life never mind sharing it with the world. I made the decision to do so, because life became way more than I could handle alone. It is true that the problems I face are not different from the ones I dealt with my whole life, but it all came to a head. Over the years, my friends would say off and on that I should see someone for professional help. That really pissed me off. Oh, sure I listen to their problems endlessly, but they want to pawn me off on the shrink. In their defense, they were right. What I learned, in therapy, is my issues were far more serious than a friend could handle. I did think about therapy for a long time. I always decided against it, because I knew what was wrong with me. Hell, I had been told my whole life what was wrong with me. I didn’t need to pay someone to tell me. The thing is what I didn’t know is that there is nothing wrong with me. I learned that every time someone called me crazy one finger pointed at me and three-pointed back at him or her. Therapy is the best thing I ever did for myself. I am not going to lie, I was shocked by what I learned, actually it scared the hell out of me. There was some really scary stuff in the relationships I have. Bi-polar disease and alcoholism plague my relationships. What I learned, that came as a huge relief to me, is I am emotional healthy. I was lead to believe my whole life that I am broken. So I was very wrong about not going to therapy. I was working on a mess of issues that didn’t even belong to me. I have learned valuable tools to deal with the diseases my loved ones have. That’s right, I said diseases. Mental health gets impaired by diseases like any other parts of the body. I have learned how to best support those people and I have learned how to protect myself. Those diseases can be very damaging to others. Most of all, I learned how to truly love them and myself.
I really like therapy. For 45 minutes, I get to talk about me. There is a time during the week, I can stop meeting everyone else’s needs and focus on my own. I have made my therapist laugh really hard and I have made her jaw drop to the floor. She says I am one of the strongest people she ever meet. My secret is I laugh a lot, because the shit that makes up metal illness is funny. The only thing I think that is really crazy about me is that I allowed myself to believe so many bad things that people said to me about myself. But as they say, when we know better we do better.
It took some courage to share this. I do feel that one of my purposes in life is to learn lessons and share with others. Otherwise my suffering is in vain. Now how to figure out how to keep getting the insurance to cover my mental health needs. They make me fill out questionnaires from time to time. I think I might look too healthy. I got to figure out how to save my me time.