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To Share or Not To Share

To share your mental illness with people or not to share… that is one of the toughest questions we come up against. 

I have always been a very open person - especially about my mental health. But I have always drawn a line between personal and professional relationships and what those relationships mean. I don’t reveal to employers any illness that I have unless necessary. It seems easier to me to build new friendships than to find a new job. 

Out of the Shadows

I’ve been blogging as Still Hopeful Mom for more than two years now. Using this pseudonym has enabled me to express myself completely without reservation. I’ve told the story of my son’s spiral into mental illness. I’ve documented the ups and downs of our turbulent relationship. And I’ve even revealed my own diagnosis of Bipolar II. But hiding behind the name Still Hopeful Mom has also continued to perpetuate the stigma that got me here in the first place. The stigma that led my son to make the choices that landed him in prison. 

Half of Me

It was the first Saturday night at my new place and I was anxious to get away from the cardboard boxes that filled my room. Luckily, I had been invited by an old friend to come join her and a couple of her friends in the city. I didn’t know anyone in the area yet and knew that it’d be a great opportunity to socialize with new faces, as well as catch up with the old. 

Getting Past Being Our Community Horror Story

On Presidents’ Day, a school holiday, I awoke to an unscheduled day. I needed something to do with my daughter Marilla, so I decided to take her to the park. (My other little girl, Avonlea, headed for her best friend’s house.) The weather was clear and sunny, but my mind was stormy and gloomy. I wanted to hide in my bed, read a book, and not have to interact with anyone.  It was actually a promising sign of my recovery that I was able to leave the house, so off we went.