I have been so pleasantly surprised by people’s reaction to my dear friends and followers post on Facebook. I was really bowled over by how open and honest people were with me about their own personal struggles. I received many likes and posts and even two personal messages. I still find it perplexing that some people didn’t want to support me publicly on my page. One of my dearest friends came foe coffee the day after and said she didn’t feel comfortable with discussing emotions on social media. I immediately felt defensive and told her I had nothing to be ashamed of and that I was no longer willing to hide my true character and my struggles. She is quite an old fashioned character and never likes to talk about emotions. In fact she likes to focus on the negative of most situations. She seems surprised by my struggles as she saw my as daring and competent and said she would never dare of taking her rather challenging children out for coffee and cake whereas I am always out and about with my two plus puppy.
I really feel it is based on the expectations you had whilst growing up. I personally grew up with a very competent, confident, multi tasking and glamorous mother who makes most things look easy. She doesn’t like to talk about difficulty emotions and feels it makes herself vulnerable of she reveals too much of herself. Therefore I grew up in an environment where I couldn’t open up to my Mother about difficult subjects such as periods and sex.
I thought about posting on my Facebook page thanking people for their support but I thought against it.
I wanted to ask why out of my 144 Facebook friends only 33 liked my post and 15 commented. What does that say about those remaining 96 people?
That they are willing to read all the other utter rubbish on Facebook but not comment on my post? That they don’t have an opinion? That they are more acquaintances than friends? Even the friends that didn’t comment saw me in passing and inadvertently started talking about mental heath, it was so refreshing! How sad it is that I blocked my immediate family through fear of how they might react. I am proud of myself and the tidal wave that has been created as a result of my voicing my struggles. I am proud of the small triumph that occurred the day I decided to open up my heart and my life by posting on social media.
I just wanted to say to those 96 people that even if you don’t want to comment just post #imwithyou so I know you stand with me in supporting my campaign to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health and get people talking about it.
I understand the disadvantages of social media, don’t get me wrong. We all post images that we hope will represent an image of what we wish to convey to the general public. they were often colourful, exciting and adventurous and certainly do not convey our true feelings be it feeling low or depressed. Believe you me if I posted photos that accurately represented my feelings 24/7 people would unfriend me pronto. They would be both colourful, sometimes black and white, sometimes screaming but hopefully mostly smiling with sheer joy that i have created such a beautiful little family and I am loved. I won’t apologise for that I’ posted. It reflects peoples narrow mindedness and ignorance if they wish me to shut up and not talk about how I feel.
Did I make you feel uncomfortable? Good! There are too many people suffering in silence and we will be able to prevent such people harming themselves or worse still taking their own lives if they were encouraged to talk.