Sunday, November 3, 2019

We Need Each Other.

mental health, women's health, PPA, PPD, anxiety, overwhelmed, emotions,

Do you talk about mental health with the people in your life?

Do you tell them if you're struggling?

Do you ask them if THEY are struggling?

Mental health matters. It matters to me. It should matter to you.

Over the years it has been so easy to use words like nuts, crazy, whacko, insane.

I used to use them. I shouldn't have - but I did.

That isn't to say that I never do. I still describe myself as a little crazy now and then.

What is a little crazy, anyway?

Do we really know?

But we can say whatever we want about ourselves, right? We can say we're a wee bit crazy and it's okay, but someone else uses that word against us - or about us - or about someone we love - and the gloves are off, y'all. Don't mess with me or my people.

Mental health is kind of like that. Sometimes. (Not always. I repeat: NOT. ALWAYS.)

I can talk about my own, but you, we, all of us - we should try to NOT address that of others. It's none of (y)our business.

But today it's going to be a little bit different.

I'm going to ask you to LOOK at your friends and loved ones. Take a good look.

SEE them.

Because they might be struggling, too.

There are so many hidden aspects of mental health issues, so many things we don't recognize, we don't always know that a friend who cancels dinner plans 3-4 times in a row might be facing crippling anxiety. The mom who never wants to bring her kids to your house to play? Too depressed. She doesn't WANT to use the television as a babysitter. She just has to. She literally CAN'T bring herself to leave the house.

Your friend with the clutter? There might be a number of different tendencies there. Maybe they're so overwhelmed with their anxiety - depression - whatever it may be - that one more thing seems like the thing that will push them over their personal edge.

The new mom who isn't sure what's wrong with her? The one who is afraid to tell anyone what she's feeling. What she's questioning. What she's afraid of.

You sense that something is off. You know because you've been there. Tell her. Ask her.

The momma-to-be who is afraid to leave the house. Imagining the worst? She needs you, too.

Can you reach out? Can you ask these people if they're okay? Can you remind them that they're not alone? All it takes is a question. An ear. A shoulder. A hug.

If you think that you don't know anyone experiencing these things. Or that you don't know anyone on medication to help manage their mental health? 

Think again. 

If you think that these things don't matter?

Think again.

SO many people out there are experiencing mental health related issues, and they're terrified to say so. 

The stigma that they see? Those words? "She's nuts. Crazy." "What is WRONG with him?" "What's his problem?" "I'm tired of her canceling plans." "I've had it. I'm done."

It makes so much sense for you [for us, any of us] to react this way. 


And I'm not mad at you for doing so. Truly.

I just want you to understand. 

I want you to remember that there can be so much more than the eye can see. 

So follow your heart. Acknowledge that gut instinct. 

You sense things. You're rarely wrong. 

Step out of your own comfort zone and offer to help.

Maybe watch the kids while she takes a shower. Heck, encourage her to take a bath. 

Offer to come over to her house for the playdate. Pick her up if she's afraid to drive. 

Talk to him about YOUR therapist. 

Whatever it takes. 

Make it real. Make it normal. Make it okay. 

Because it is. It's okay. Really. 

And if it doesn't feel like it is, it WILL BE. I promise. 

Because they aren't alone. They have YOU. And you know now. You know you can help. 

And they hopefully know it, too. 

Just do it.

Your friends need you. And I'm willing to bet that you need them, too.


  1. clutter can be an organizational problem that can be part of an invisible neurological condition. It's taken me a lifetime to learn to organize and while others think my house looks great unless there is absolutely nothing out of place and kind of minimalist it will always look disorganized to me.
    Unfortunately nobody understood that this was a real problem as I was so "together." I always here the voice of my father yelling at me--and I was a self supporting adult with a great apartment. He turned out to be very disorganized but nobody saw that so he put it on me--the person he was closest to. Invisible disabilities are very real and very debilitating. Had I known earlier I could have overcome it with much more ease and grace but...


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