“I pledge my commitment to the Blog For Mental Health 2013 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”
As a part of this pledge the rules indicate a few things.
First, that I make the pledge above.
Third, that I must give a short biography of my mental health and what this pledge means to me. This is a little more difficult than I first imagined it would be, after all I just started this blog and opening up to this kind of vulnerability right off the bat is not something I wanted to do. I wanted to gradually let people into my world but let’s go ahead and briefly open the flood gates just to see what comes.
I first remember having panic attacks in the fifth grade so I have been plagued with anxiety for quite a number of years. My anxiety manifested itself in a number of ways including self harm, panic attacks, serious issues with food, suicidal ideation, drug and alcohol abuse, and depression. The climax of my anxiety was when I was admitted into an inpatient facility and began medical treatment of my anxiety and depression (as well as the whole host of other symptoms). After release, I continued to see a therapist and psychiatrist for about 6 and 3 years, respectively. Since this time I have had a better grasp on my anxiety and the other symptoms that came along with it; however, I will admit that I have times where I regress back into old patterns but I have a better awareness now and can detect when I am falling. Now I have devoted my career path to helping others, raising awareness of mental health issues, and helping to reduce the stigma of what it means to have a mental illness. Helping others get resources that I didn’t even know existed and couldn’t have dreamed of accessing is what I strive to do with this blog.
Now that wasn’t too horribly painful on my end. I guess I couldn’t hope to get rid of stigma if I was still clinging on to stigmatizing myself and the struggles I have endured. I plan to address a more in-depth look at what I have dealt with and also some things that I don’t have any first hand experience in with the future posts on this blog. I hope to have some guest writers as well that have first hand experience where I don’t.
Fourth, I am supposed to link to other mental health bloggers and ask them to take the pledge as well. However, this being only my second post I am not too familiar with other mental health bloggers at this time. As my familiarity grows, I plan on asking others as I come by them to take this pledge, if they have not already done so.