I don’t know how to ask people for help, or ideas. I’m so use to people trying to get over on me, or use me I just stay in my little bubble. I deleted facebook and all Social media almost 3 years ago. I decided to focus more on my family. My husband and our children needed more of mommy, than social media.
I had a big Minority Mental health page, I had a stop the stigma of mental illness page, groups for both, and a Life Coaching pageven, then of course my personal page! Way too much. My intentions were good. Trying to help those with mental health issues through Life Coaching and trying to change the way Minorities viewed mental illness.
So since I’ve been totally off Social Media, and working less mostly from home. My kids are paying more attention to my routine. As some of you may know I’m totally open about my mental illness struggles. It’s in the blog “This too shall pass.”
But to make it short, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, PTSD, generalized anxiety disorder, and clinical depression. My method of treatment to maintain a comfortable (I never say normal, no such thing) life includes some Cognitive therapy, medication and writing.
Recently I’ve noticed when I take my medicine my children look. My 6 year old even asked me what it was and why I needed it. I know that children are curious, and I preach on not being ashamed of mental illness or taking medication for it if its a part of your treatment. That’s not the problem, my kids look up to me and I don’t want to explain to them why I had to to take these.
So I spoke with my husband and we decided to talk to them together. I know that with my mental illness my children are more than likely to have some sort of mental health issue as well. I didn’t want to influence any behaviours, or attribute to this unauthentically. But they’re getting older,and we have 2 children diagnosed with ADHD (therapy only no medication) so I told them what they needed to know without adding anothing unnecessary. I told them that mommy wants to be the best me. When I take my medicine the doctor gave me, it helps me feel better when mommy’s feeling sad, angry, or numb.
We got some questions from them that we dealt with. But I still feel bad being an outspoken advocate for mental illness, and I don’t want my kids to look down on me for taking psych meds.
When the conversation was over, the kids were so amused because I was uncomfortable telling them so I started making jokes. I told them “Y’all don’t want mommy to turn into Hulk right?” And their laughter was so needed. Watching my kids, and seeing that they didn’t look down on me. In fact they’d heard me doing speaking engagements before, and watched some of my videos. So they were quoting me about not being ashamed to say you have a mental illness, how taking your treatment is a part of your mental health journey and stopping the stigma of mental illness especially in minority communities. My babies had me crying so hard, I was and am so proud of them! They help me through my struggles, and I don’t know what I would do without them!
Trust that your children love you, and they’re paying attention to what you are passionate about. I want to write about how to prepare your children for your diagnosis, this doesn’t just have to be about mental health if anyone has any ideas.