Gotta Love Facebook

This is what I posted as a status update on my ‘real life’ Facebook account on Friday;

I cannot keep falling like this, I NEED to get my act together for 2011.

A few friends commented, and I hereby post the more relevant comments to do with this post;

N: Recovery takes hard work and commitment. It’s so easy to say to ourselves that “we’re not sick enough” or “it’s ok his once” but the reality is that to recover you’ve got to stick with treatment – even when you do t feel like it, or don’t feel sick enough or really don’t give a shit. It’s gonna take a long time. It will try you, make you upset, angry, etc. But recovery means making a lot of changes, and making them with the full knowledge that you can’t go back. I know you’re capable of it, if that’s what you want. But I also can’t tell you it’ll be ok – just because you deserve it. You do deserve for everything to be ok, but he world doesn’t work that way, unfortunately and we must fight the fight to get ourselves well. Take care of YOU miss BtF. Xx

Me: You’re right N, as much as the truth is hard. It is so easy to give up on recovery when it seems too difficult. But I really do need to get my act together next year- I want to succeed in OT, dammit! I’m telling myself I’m going to be compliant with meds- no stopping them myself again. I’m going to give that DBT a go, providing my pdoc agrees. I need to stop ending up in the ED. And one IP admission this year is enough. I need to make some changes, I really do. But it’s easier said than done… and is going to take time and lots of hard work.

L: I was meant to be doing the year-long DBT course at [hospital], but the time commitment meant that I couldn’t – it’s one group session and one compulsory pdoc session per week and you can’t miss many, so not particularly uni-friendly. It’s apparently very good though, female only, and the lady who runs it, S, is very lovely. Otherwise I think [Group place] run similar short courses using a lot of DBT style stuff. I did a couple there after IP last year and they were really quite helpful. The mindfulness stuff is great, sometimes quite hard to sit with, but really rewarding.

Good luck!

Me: Thanks for that L. Yeah I’ve heard DBT is pretty intense :S The pdoc when I was in IP at [hospital] was the one who recommended I do DBT- apparently the referral wouldve been sent off to my regular pdoc so I’m not sure where I’d be doing it- I shall see. x

Because of the replies I sent to my friends, gee am I in trouble…

My 17 year old cousin saw this on his News Feed while on Facebook. He told his mother, who rushed off to my grandparents house to question them about it, who then called my mother to join the party. My cousin and my aunt do not know of my mentalism. My grandparents, and obviously my mother, do. My mother spent about an hour at my grandparents house, and it’s good to know they were discussing my mental health issues behind my back.

I thought I was vague enough in my comments, but apparently not.

My mother arrived home, reported that my aunt now knows and that they advised me to delete the comments off Facebook. Coz ya know, it’s shameful to have a mental illness and all. My aunt’s reasoning is that the people at work, as we both work in the same pharmacy, may be nasty about it and start treating me differently.

I don’t want to delete the comments. I don’t want to bow down to stigma and I don’t want to submit to the shame that I should apparently feel. I was simply having a conversation with friends who have both been IP in a psych ward and were kind enough to share their experiences and some encouragement. I don’t see what’s wrong with that.

It’s not that I’m naive or too innocent to realise there is a certain stigma associated with mental illness. I know it all too well. But it’s my life, my choice, and I’m willing to take that risk in leaving those comments up there. I don’t see how that much can be grasped from it anyway? Furthermore, I posted it on Friday, it’s now Monday so a bit too late to hide it I think.

Unfortunately I will no doubt be subjected to questioning and probing by my aunt during the half hour’s drive to and from work when I’m rostered on for Wednesday. Now that’s going to be an uncomfortable conversation.  This is the same aunt who thinks 17 or 18 is too young to have depression. Who also thinks that depression is a sign of weakness. Seeing her on Wednesday will be *fun*…

9 thoughts on “Gotta Love Facebook

  1. I’m sorry to hear that your aunt is not going to be supportive to you. It’s hard enough suffering from mental health issues without the backing of your family. Believe me I’ve been there with my mum, so I know how horrible it feels. I remember being told to pull myself together and what not from my mum when I was about 21 and it made me feel like crap. I hope that you are able to deal with the questioning. I wish I could offer you some help with this but I always used to just get angry and still do with my mum because she still has huge issues with me being unwell when I am. I wanted to say good luck and I will be thinking of you on wednesday.

  2. How dare they suggest you ought to be ashamed? Fuck that! Ask the stupid cow if she would have thrown such a fit if you’d mentioned being hospitalised for a broken leg and when she says, “no, but…” then you’ve proven your point and can note that, therefore, the issue should be left at that.

    Illness happens. Why is it such a big deal if it happens to the mound rather than, say, the liver or pancreas!

    Sod them, and sod the stigma.

    (I know this is all very easy for me to say; I’m “out” pin RL FB as you probably know. I ‘ve grown tired of hiding, and really don’t see why I should. If people have a problem with it they can remove me from their friends list, both FB and ‘real’. I’ll not be sorry to see the back of them!)

    Good luck whatever happens.


    P xxx

  3. The ‘mound’? I just invented a new anatomical term there! I meant, of course, the ‘mind’.

    (Sorry, I’m half-crazed by Venlafaxine withdrawal and am typing on my phone. Getting even a few words right feels like an achievement at the minute…)

  4. People’s denial or refusal to even try to understand about mental illness is so frustrating. It can have such an impact on our own knowledge, making you question if what they are saying doesn’t have an element of truth in it. So many people seem to think this way. It’s all the more harder to take when it’s a close relative who you would hope would be supportive and understanding. It really digs when you know other people who know that you are ill still want to hide the truth and protect themselves from being asked awkward questions or be “connected” to you, as maybe it’s catching and people may think less of them. Well done for staying strong and not deleting the comments. Hugs xx

  5. Reading this makes me so angry on your behalf. Part of me wants to fly across the ocean and give your mom and aunt a good smack upside their heads, and another part of me wants to just wrap you up in a big hug.

    It’s frustrating and upsetting when the people we deal with on a regular basis don’t understand/aren’t supportive, but at least know that we in the Madosphere get it. And we’ll always be here for you.


  6. Yikes…so sorry to here that you’re going through such a difficult time. This is one of my biggest fears realized. *hugs* Here for you…

  7. People’s outrageousness and ignorance never fails to continue to amaze me. You’d think by now we’d be used to it, but with everyone spouting ‘diversity’ you’d like to hope things would change. They still havent. Sorry, you had to deal with this hun. x

  8. That sucks. I hate FB and recently deleted mine. Having BPD, I would sometimes post cryptic things that made people wonder and then they’d be all over it in PMs and so forth. Hope things start improving for you. Addison

  9. You should have to delete your comments; it is almost as if they feel ashamed someone in the family has a mental health problem.

    I keep thinking of linking my blog to FB, but I worry if the family read it, but then again I continue to tell myself what does it matter when all I write it the truth!

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