There’s so much stigma around mental heath but honestly screw that. If you’re struggling I want you to know that you’re not alone at all. I wanted to start this series for people to share their experiences with mental health to help other people feel less alone and share their healthy coping strategies. I’m super excited to be able to feature some readers on the blog. If you’re interested in taking part of this series you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks so much to Heather for taking part in this series. Please make sure you checkout her blog and social media.
Name: Heather Smith
Location: Northern Michigan
Career: Stay At Home Mom/Blogger
Twitter/insta -@sassyathome, facebook.com/pinterest.com -/sassyathome
Favorite quote: You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take – Wayne Gretzky
Who are your biggest inspirations: RUTH Soukup!! My children. My husband!
Give us the rundown, who are you and what do you do?
I’m Heather and I am a stay at home mom and a blogger. In other words, I am a jack of all trades and a master of none! I’m always in the process of discovering my identity as a woman, mother, and wife, so I don’t always know “who” I am.
What’s it been like, how has mental health impacted your life?
I have had depression since I was a teenager. At the time it caused a lot of social issues. I never was able to keep friends. I never had a single “best friend” and I felt isolated and lonely most of the time. As an adult, my depression impacts all of my relationships and my confidence in myself. When I’m upset I have to check myself and ask “Is this depression? Is this anxiety? Am I right for feeling this way?”
What has been the best and most difficult parts of your mental health journey?
The best part of my journey has been finding a doctor who listens. I don’t see a psychiatrist or therapist, so having a General Physician who listens to what I need and is willing to try different things to help me feel better!
The worst is that even now that I’m medicated and “in remission” from my depression, I still doubt my feelings a lot. I am concerned that if I have a few bad days in a row that maybe my meds aren’t working anymore or that I am too broken to actually fix.
How do you do it? What does self care mean to you and how does it fit into your life?
For me, self care is about listening to what I need and making it happen. I am the only one who truly knows what I need, and I have to be willing to ask for help if I need it.
Tell us what makes you thrive, what is the best thing you’ve ever done for your mental health? Acknowledging that I needed help. Honestly, I dealt with depression for many years before I realized that I was not okay.
Spread some inspo, what keeps you going when you’re struggling with your mental health?
My support system! My husband, doctor, family, friends are all intimately aware of my depression and are willing and able to support me. Whether that means I need some coddling and care or some tough love telling me to get to the doctor and get stuff straightened out.
Drop some wisdom on us, what lessons have you learned from managing your mental health?
I am the ONLY person who can take care of me. Other people care about me. Other people can help me. But nobody but me can actually know what I need better than I do.
Spread a message, what do you wish more people knew about mental health?
Mental illness is no different than any other illness. Sometimes it needs medical help. Sometimes it just needs support. If you have pneumonia, you need meds to get better. If you have a cold, you just need a little help. That’s how mental health is as well. Sometimes you can get better with just some support, talk therapy, etc. But if you need medication, that’s totally okay!
Spread the love, what advice do you have for anyone reading this that is struggling with mental health?
Take one step today. It can be a tiny step of telling a loved one you don’t feel good today. If it’s hard to tell someone in person, find a message board. Just start talking about it.
I am not a licensed therapist. If you are suffering from a major disorder and need treatment please seek the help of a professional. If you need help finding a mental health care provider call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit BetterHelp to talk to a certified therapist online at an affordable price. You can download a free printable list of hotlines here and join the free mental health support group on Facebook here. This post contains affiliate links, you can read my full disclosure policy here.
I would love it if you join my internet family! Checkout Facebook/Twitter for informational articles and Instagram for inspirational quotes to keep you going. Follow me on SnapChat to see me get through the day to day grind (also videos of my cute pup!).