As a parent who is home 24/7, and struggling with mental health, I found it hard to accept that I needed help. When being a new mom dealing with postpartum depression, or even struggling with potentially loosing your job during the global pandemic, its tough to admit that you need help.
I am in no means a medical professional. If you need help, please contact your medical professional.This post may contain affiliate links, where I may earn a commission at no cost to you. This helps me keep providing you with content.
When I first became a mom to my wonderful daughter, whom I gave up for adoption, I didn’t know about postpartum depression, nor did I know anything about the real world, being a former foster child. It took me talking to my mom about what was happening, and her telling me that I needed help.
It was July 2014, I was a new adult fresh out of foster care, having no care in the world, and just doing what I want with no consequences. My mom was concerned with my habits, as was I. I went to the doctor and talked to him about what was going on. He admitted that I was struggling with mental health.
He placed me on my meds, and off I went. Years go by and I am still struggling with mental health. I am constantly lying to my significant other, cheating, and spending money that I didn’t have. My mom and husband like to say, “I was living in a champagne world, on a koolaid budget,”
I constantly refused to talk about my problems. There are signs to knowing when you need help and I am here to help you get there.
Step One: Just Cry it Out
It’s okay to cry. Society has taught us that women are seen as emotional and unstable, whereas men are taught that its unmanly and unsightly to cry. It makes them look weak. To hell with that logic. Just because you cry, does not make you weak, it makes you stronger, it shows that you have emotions. Your emotions are valid. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise!
Take a pillow, put your head in it and scream your frustrations out. Cry in the shower if thats your thing. I do it when I am alone. At a young age, I was shown that my feelings were not valid, and I brought that with me into adulthood. Even now, I struggle with letting my emotions show to my now-husband, then-boyfriend, Kiefer. Once you feel you have had enough, proceed to the next step.
Step 2: Talk with a friend, etc.
If you feel like you need to talk to someone before taking the big leap and talking to a mental health professional, find someone who is your rock, who will validate your feelings and push you to make that leap. It may be tough to find someone you can talk to, because you may feel like no one is there, or that no one will help. However, just knowing that there is a friend, spouse, family member, etc, out there.
I struggle a lot with taking to my husband about what I am feeling on a day to day basis. So, I just tell him “nothing is wrong’ or that “I’m fine,” but he doesn’t accept it. He always pushes me to keep talking about my feelings, even when I don’t want to.
Step 3: Journal Your Feelings
Now you may choose not to talk with a friend, and that’s okay. You can always document your feelings in another form. Like writing, drawing, or any form of art. When I am not talking about my feelings, I tend to search the web for other journal ideas, or even journal shopping therapy. I shop around for different journals where I may purchase to probably write in it.
I use Amazon for all my shopping needs for journalling and I found the cutest journal in it, as well as some cute pens to go with it. Journaling isn’t for everyone. You may find that another method is best for you, and that’s alright. You do you. There isn’t anything wrong about that.
- My Signs of Depression
Step 4: See Your Mental Health Professional
It may be tough to pick up that phone to schedule an appointment, but I want you to take a deep breath, pick up that phone and dial it. I encourage you to try your hardest to make that appointment. When I first made my appointment, I was scared. I didn’t want it to happen, but I took a breath, pulled up my big girl pants and took that leap.
If you need help, you can always ask someone you trust to make that appointment for you. Just make sure that it is someone you have talked to before about how you are feeling.
Step 5: Attend Your Appointment
Everyone’s mental health appointment with their doctor is going to be different, based on their symptoms. Mine was just me talking about how I was feeling down, and sporadic, and recently it was about me constantly sleeping. Neither was healthy.
Sleeping wise, I was going to bed at 10 pm pacific time, waking up to send my husband off to work at 5:30 am pacific, then going back to sleep until my son woke me up at 8 am pacific. After I dropped him off at daycare, I would then walk home, curl back in bed and sleep until 11 am, then fall back asleep and sleep until 1/2 pm.
Like I said, unhealthy, am I right? Your appointment will go based on what you talk to your doctor about. Honestly, it’s always good to be honest with your doctor about what you have been feeling like, because they can decide the best course for you.
Step 6: Applaud Yourself
Congrats, you’ve completed a crucial part of your journey. I am so proud of you! Go get yourself a reward, be it a doughnut, a new book, etc. There are many different parts of this journey, but we will get there when it is time. I love to reward myself with new books, as that is one of my hobbies.
Let me know in the comments below about your journeys, I would love to hear them.