I’m “crazy” and psychotic

Me, and the 1 in 5 individuals living with a mental health disorder, are “crazy”. But how crazy are we really? If you try to dissect that statistic to find out how many people live with bipolar disorder, you’ll sadly find an inconsistent range of numbers and percentages. This means that…

You don’t have to judge yourself and worry about how “crazy” you are because no one actually knows how many people are living with bipolar disorder. Congratulations?

Being bipolar is not a label that translates into “crazy” yet we judge ourselves because of our so-called earth shattering diagnosis. Luckily, my support circle has shielded me from the stark reality of mental health stigma. However, I can only imagine what a dagger this stigma must leave in someone’s mental health and self-esteem based on the few encounters I’ve had from my workplace and ex-friends.

If you attach “bipolar disorder” to any name, you’ll likely find a trail of followers who believe that we are “hot and cold”, “unstable”, “unpredictable”, and even “dangerous” to some.

The idea that we hear voices and have suicidal thoughts are terrifying to others who live without a mental health disorder and that is not always the fault of the individual! I am not playing a blame-game here. I’m only stating a stereotype that is… unfortunately… a real lived experience by others who are in the bipolar community. Moving forward, how do we break free from this?

2018 is coming at full speed after all – it’s about time we stop judging ourselves and others who are living with bipolar disorder – because the judgment only progresses our symptoms.

I’ve seen that the gate has been open for a while, even for me, so I know that walking through it and freeing yourself from self judgment can be scary. To breathe in sanity is like stepping into unknown territory because we have lived in this cage of labels for so long. Personally, I judge myself every time I call my workplace to say I’m sick. Especially when I’m not in some active hurricane that is wrapped up in suicidal thoughts and voices.

Remember: preventing a cold is better than having a cold, and this also applies to your mental health and my own.

So if you think the formula to eliminating your “crazy” is by trying harder, think again. The answer is within your control, your power, and in you! The world can be yours if you begin to see that you aren’t just “crazy”. We’re all built differently, which means you are sooo much more than “crazy”, “psychotic”, and “bipolar”.

Before the year ends, list out all the things that you are AND that you want to be.

Repeat it over and over again. You will become that. And eventually, you will walk right through the gate despite everything that has held you back.

xoxo,
Joanne

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