Since my early twenties, I’ve been living with a compulsive mental disorder. I’ve struggled to keep it under control for more than two decades.
The challenges of this disorder have had a tremendous effect on my life and still continue to do so today. It can be hard to take each day at a time, sometimes feeling as if I’m watching the world pass me by. Many days, I cannot find the energy or courage to show up in life—let alone engage in any activities or make plans for the future. It can be devastating to have these intrusive thoughts and feelings plague me even during times where I should be enjoying myself and focusing on taking care of myself.
My journey with this mental illness has felt like an uphill battle that has no end in sight. But over time, I realized I need support and understanding from those around me too move forward and take steps toward wellness. With help from both professionals and close friends/family members, we’ve come up with harm-reduction approaches allowing me to manage my condition better while still living a full life.
Though there are roadblocks ahead every day, having their support makes the battle easier to face. Knowing that people are there for me when needed is invaluable—even if it’s just knowing they’re listening when things feel too overwhelming for words helps tremendously when I feel at rock bottom. For anyone else going through something similar, know you don’t have to go through it alone; reach out; there is help available!