Compassionate Love: Displaying compassion for those who struggle with mental illness, addiction, or abuse (c) 2018 Nancy Virden, Always The Fight Ministries
Secrets and shame lead to silence. Whether your story is about emotional struggles, mental illness, addiction, or abuse, you may feel voiceless.
Silence no more! You can speak up and be heard. Three obstacles likely stand in the way. The first is false beliefs, discussed in part one of this series. This post and the next cover the other two.
Obstacle # 2 : Fear of what will happen once you speak
Let’s face it. Silence has its pay-offs. Status quo is familiar, and familiarity is comfortable.
We also know that fear is paralyzing, and interrupts our joy. Same-old is tiresome, and possibly dangerous. Continuing to make the same choices that never worked, or ceased benefitting us, will keep us stuck.
Asking for help means admitting to your challenge. That’s okay. You are not alone. There are systems already in place. Whether you need to escape abuse, find recovery, or deal with mental health issues, trust those systems.
We are fearful of change, and do not know what these organizations or people can do to help. They are the experts, who gladly answer these questions. We have to trust safe people who have devoted their lives to helping.
Domestic violence shelters are led by trained personnel, able to guide you safely through the uncertainty of child care, finances, work, and legal issues.
Mental health professionals are ready to help with troublesome thoughts and emotions. If you are in crisis, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
Rehabilitation Treatment Centers require some proof that you are investing in your recovery. Go through those hoops and take it seriously. Once in, follow the advice of worthy men and women who know what works.
Who to contact
If you can find no help in your area, search online for reputable sites. (Be careful, do not offer identifying information). On my resource pages, you will find emergency numbers and links to sites offering the information you need.
It is a good idea to have that initial support in place before you broaden the scope of your voice. Chances are, like most of us, you set-up a façade in the past. The false image that all is well has helped you cope. Taking the mask off will surprise those who know you.
Some people will not believe your story. Others may walk away. Be prepared.
If you can, practice using your voice with those who relate and are non-judgmental. In support groups, group therapy, and anonymous 12-step groups, you will find non-critical acceptance. If these are scarce in your area, perhaps a healthy online service is an option. (Again, be careful. Do not use your real name.)
With support from people who build you up on an ongoing basis, your voice will grow strong.
Stay tuned for a solution to obstacle #3, procrastination.
Today’s Helpful Word
Psalm 121: 1,2 (A song for pilgrims)
I look up to the mountains—
does my help come from there?
My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth!
******COMMENTS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME.
NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental illness, abuse, and addiction. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. (for international emergency numbers, go here ), or go to your nearest emergency room. Do not be alone. Hope and help are yours.
Pics: Climbers top by AYLA87; Climbers bottom by MIMICA, both of rgbstock.com