Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Getting Serious about Mental Health

 Good Morning all you wonderful viewers. I hope your Holiday weekend was full of hope, happiness, and really good food! I'm sorry I haven't posted in a few days, but I needed to take some time to be with my friends and family.
  Before I get started with Today's Post, I want to give you all a warning. Today will not be my usual type of post. It won't be funny, or rant-y. Today I will be getting real about Post Partum Depression, and Mental Healthcare.
  I was diagnosed with  Postpartum Depression or PPD at 3 weeks, 4 days PP. Tater was in the NICU for the second time, I was sick with a cold and couldn't visit... From the hours of 10am-2pm I was completely alone. Those 4 hours I did nothing but sob. I wouldn't leave bed, I didn't eat or sleep, I just felt like I was so alone. For the first time in my life I couldn't smile. I remember my best friend taking me to lunch and saying "You need to get help, or you're going to snap" she was right... That afternoon I was placed on Celaxa. I felt like I had failed. I didn't want to share this battle with my family, or friends. I was so embarrassed and ashamed that I had to take pills to control my happiness. I remember when I told my Dad, I was shaking because I was so afraid he was going to think I was a horrible mother. I honestly thought if I told people, CPS was going to take away my little T.
  Instead of reaching out to those closest to me, I hid from my family, friends, and peers.
I finally reached out to the Internet. I felt that if no one really knew what was wrong, that I could just ignore it.  I looked up every natural PPD remedy, I look at support message boards, I looked at every corner of the Internet I could find. I did research on Mental Health statistics, both PPD related, and not. Through all the time, and things I read there was one thing I noticed that really "ruffled my jimmies" as B would say. With all the PPD support websites and boards, there was ALWAYS someone there to shame these women. I'm not one to typically get my feelings hurt by strangers on the Internet, but this made me so mad. So I did more lurking. I looked at things for people who suffered from a mental health disorder their whole lives. There they were, the people who were shaming others for seeking help for an illness they couldn't control. I really don't understand why we are shaming people for seeking help.
 The amount of times I read someone shame these people who "need pills to make it through hard times." really is upsetting. It's no wonder you see things on the news about mother's who snap, and disappear or harm their babies... It's because we've created this Stigma about mental health that makes people ashamed to seek help. I was one of 'Those People" who were ashamed to admit that they were seeking help. THAT IS NOT HOW IT SHOULD BE. No one should feel ashamed for battling any type of mental disorder. Mental Disorders aren't made up creatures, they are real struggles and battles that One in Four people suffer with each year. That is 61.5 million people. Why the hell are we shaming these people, instead of reaching out? Why isn't there more support for those who need it? I don't care who you are, or what you're struggling with, you don't deserve to be shamed.
  Honestly, if you think mental disorders are just peoples way of seeking attention then you need to do some research. I will attach some links at the bottom for anyone who cares to read them. Here is what I hope for with this post:
  If you are suffering from a mental disorder and aren't getting help, please reach out to anyone. If you are a 'Mental Health Shamer' please do some research to understand that we aren't faking an illness to be doped up on pills. Together we can break the stigma, and allow more help to be provided to those who need it.
  I am S. I battle PPD, I have anxiety, and I take Celaxa. That doesn't define who I am, or how great of a mother I am.

If you or someone you know is struggling with PPD, clinical depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, or any of the hundreds of mental disorders please contact your doctor and seek support; here are some great resources.
Depression/Bipolar Support
Depression support groups
Postpartum Support

The websites above also have great research about mental illness. Here are a few more:
Mayo Clinic Research on Mental Illness
National Alliance on Mental Illness
Together we can end the stigma on Mental Health Disorders.

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