Honoring Mental Health Awareness Month

You know, I thought this was going to be an easy post to write. May was mental health awareness month, I am a therapist, and I just wanted to wrap up that time in a way that honored people.

But, as soon as my fingers hit the keyboard, the feelings started. I’m going to try to slow down and articulate why.

I think this message felt hard because it’s not only a general message but a personal one. Every single statement below has someone’s face behind it. A client. A friend. A family member. Me. While the overall message is certainly for everyone, my heart is tender to the people who inspired it.

So, for all those who have worried if their mental health difficulties are a personal failure, I hope you can hear me speak these truths to you. Please, remember…

Depression is not weakness of character.

Anxiety isn’t “being irrational.”

Suicide is not selfish or “the easy way out.”

OCD is not a lack of thought control.

Postpartum depression is not failing as a Mom.

Bipolar disorder is not “being moody.”

Mental health medication is not “giving in.”

Going to therapy is not intended as a last resort.

Mental illness can be so very hard. And, every day someone battles through is a victory. We must remember that these challenges are treatable and manageable but also so intense for some that we lose them to it. For this reason, empathy, grace, and self-compassion are some of the most important tools we can bring to the table, both for ourselves and others.

Mental health challenges are not moral failures.

You are not a failure.

You not alone.

You are valuable.

(Originally published on @annemrulo) June 1, 2021. By Anne Rulo, Author, Speaker, Therapist. FB/IG/Twitter @annemrulo

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