Freitag, 24. Juni 2016

[Something to Think About] An open letter to husbands with wifes who deal with mental illness

Dear Future Husband,

whoever you are, whoever you will be, there are some things you should know about me.

I´m not the person I seem to be on the outside. I have different faces. Different personalities. Different voices. 
There´s not just me. 
I have to deal with so much more than "just me". It´s more than that.

My life can be really good. And I can be really happy. I can laugh. And love. And dance. And sing. And do whatever happy people do in their lives. I can be like that. And I can really mean it like that. Sometimes I can fake it really good. It just depends on which "me" there is. 

There is the me I once was. The happy child. A funny girl. You would love her. She´s great. Very fair. A dancer. A singer. 
And I really would love to keep her. But she´s more gone than really here. I´ve lost her somehow. 
I can´t even tell how it happened. I miss her. And I try to be her again, but that´s not possible. 

Because there are so many more I have to deal with. 

The me who is just empty. You can talk to her and she won´t answer. I´m sorry about that. I maybe hear your voice. I maybe see you talking. But in that moment, it doesn´t mean anything to me. Because there are no feelings left in me. I stare to the wall. I´m not really here. I´m anywhere but here. I forget how to feel anything. Just emptiness is left inside. I stop existing. And I really want to tell you how you could help me to get out of that. But I can´t. Because I simply don´t know how. 

The angry one. Angry about anything. My life. Myself. My future. My past. My present. And even you. There´s a short-circuit in my brain. I can´t think straightly. I can´t tell you anymore what´s wrong and what´s right. I maybe even shout at you and I´m so sorry about that. I hate myself because of that. 

The depressed one. Everything gets dark. Empty. Lonely. Sad. I know you are there. There for me. And I want to tell you that. But in this moment it just doesn´t matter. I´m not able to tell you how I really feel. Because there´s just too much that I feel. Depression is not just sadness. It´s a mix of so different feelings, I can hardly handle them. 

The anxiety. Oh those fears! Irrational? Yes. Maybe. Definitely. But I can´t turn them off. I care too much. I think too much. I fear too much. Sometimes it´s just a word. A voice. A thought. A view. Anything can turn on my fear. And I will tell you that I will fail. That I´m not worth it. That I´m stupid. Dumb. A wreck. I will tell you that you should go. To someone better. Because I´m simply not worth to stay. Please don´t go. I need you. 
Maybe I can´t tell you how much I need you but I definitely do. More than you even can imagine! 

I work on it so hard! 
I learn to breathe.
I learn to control me.
I learn not to break.
I learn to think about solutions. Not problems. 
I work on this every day and every night. 

And sometimes I´m really good at it.

And sometimes I´m not.
Sometimes I fail in controlling me. I fail to breathe. I break down. And I can see nothing but problems. No solutions anywhere. And I know that´s difficult to handle. For you and for me. I know it´s hard. But I just can assert, that I am fighting my hardest.  

I want you to know, that mental illness is not weakness. And it´s not a choice
I don´t want to be like that. 
Do you think I would choose this way to live, if I really had a choice? 
I don´t have a bad day. I don´t have a phase. I´m not mad. Not crazy. Not stupid. I´m ill. And it won´t help me just to "get out in the sun!", "hear some children laughing" or "just go out and be happy!", because that won´t make the illness go away. There´s much more to do. 

And oh, I really know I´m complicated. It´s not easy to be with me. I know that. But it makes it just worse if you tell it to me over and over again. I know it. I work on it. I work on myself day and night. 

And there´s something more you need to know. I am not my illness. It does not define me. I´m so much more than my depression and my anxiety. In most of the times I can´t see it myself, but I am a warrior. A fighter. I have to fight against myself every day. And I survived. I survived myself in a time, I didn´t wanted to live anymore. I am a surviver. I have strenght and courage. And that´s what defines me. Not my mental illness. There is so much more than this. 

I know it´s hard to understand. But it´s even harder to explain it, believe me. 

To help me, you just have to care. Please tell me, that I´m not as terrible as I think I am. Not such a failure as I feel. If I´m not able to love myself - which will be very often - show me, that you instead love me. That I am worth it. I maybe can´t show you how it helps me. I maybe can´t tell you how thankful I am. But I am. And this alone will help me to get through it. I need my friends around me to get through this crazy thing called life. And I´m thankful for everyone of you. I hope you know that. 

So dear future husband, I hope you can love me the way I am. Because this is just the way I am. I can´t be different. I tried to be a different person my whole life. Wore a mask for lot of years. Faked a show. But that´s simply not me. 
I´m tired of faking and masking. I´m tired of being a different person. So I choose to be me. I am what I am. And you have to deal with it like I have to deal with your little craziness. 
Because let´s be honest: We all have our mistakes. We are all a bit crazy. Or to say it in the Chesire Cats words: We are all mad here. I bet she´s right with that. We all have to deal with our problems. Our craziness. So let´s start to accept the craziness and the problems of others. Let´s start to see mental illness as what it is: a illness. Let´s end stimga on it. Let´s love each other the way we are. Let´s stop faking everything. Let´s start to be real. 

In love,
your future wife

*Ihr findet die deutsche Version hier.*

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