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Elephant 1

Photo by: Christina Jasberg

Mental Illness- The Elephant in the Room

It has been there all along, a gigantic beast that everyone knows is there and it is not leaving.  So why don’t we recognize it, sit down with it and talk?  Why not get to know it and understand the elephant’s point of view.  That is why this blog is here.  It is time to give a name and a face to the elephant and no longer let it go misunderstood.

The elephant’s name is mental illness.  Personally, we are well acquainted because I live with it.  I have had a diagnosis for the last 20 years so mental illness and I go way back.  For the last 10 years I have talked about my experience to judges, police officers, family members and politicians.  My mission is simple, but it is the most momentous task I have ever undertaken.  My goal is to educate the masses and embrace the elephant and teach it how to stomp on ignorance and stigma.

This is not a one person job, stigma is far too massive for me alone.  I will, though, not let the silence exist for the days left that I have on this planet.   So I will talk about my life and my experience, my pain and my triumphs.  I will do my best to express my lived experience, with the hopes that my voice may not  fall upon deaf ears.

I know that recovery from mental illness is not only possible, but a reality.  Today I have meaning and purpose in my life.  I wake up and am thankful to be alive.  I have taken the road less traveled by, but it HAS made all the difference.  Join me on this journey of discovery.

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4 thoughts on “About

  1. I enjoyed this article it is so true. You express yourself intelligently. People have to realize that just because you have a mental illness doesn’t mean we are dumb. I am will you on the journey of discovery.

  2. I just heard your interview on ‘The Mental Illness Happy Hour’ and wanted to seek out and follow your blog immediately. I could relate to much of what you had to say. I spent the majority of my life acting happy when I was, in fact, in misery. You discussed your perfectionism. I dealt with that, too, and found that I was hating myself more with each perceived failure. I was hospitalized for the first time this past November after a very violent attempt on my life that I barely survived, but hadn’t ever self harmed before that. I had the urge to hurt myself but had let it build up in me for over 20 years instead. My attempt left the few people that knew about it stunned and shocked because I had never shown any signs of depression or an ability to hurt myself in any way.

    In my profession, which I love, I got the most enjoyment out of blogging, presenting, researching and submitting writings and research related to my industry and now I find healing in blogging about my illness. So I am throwing my ‘obsessive perfectionism’ into learning about suicide and my diagnosis (OCD and major depressive disorder). A bonus is that I have found that there are many intellegent, viable, good people out there that have come back from this and are even doing well. Thank you for solidifying that realization.

    I look forward to reading more about your journey and future health. Have a good weekend!

    -Christine O’Hagan 🙂

    • Thank you so much Christine! I am so glad you liked the podcast and looked up my blog. Thank you so much for your willingness to comment with such openness and honesty. I am honored that you chose to share your story with me. I really applaud you for the wisdom and strength you show throughout your story. It sounds like you have been through so much and are facing life and finding out how to help yourself. The roller coaster of recovery can be so exhausting, especially when it involves trying to live up to the impossible standards of perfection. I find that the struggle is all worth it because things do get better. Thank you again for this comment. I’ll check out your blog too! I have neglected this blog for a while but will get back to writing. Stay strong, Christina

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