I was diagnosed with a mental illness eight years ago. Asking for help has gotten easier, but I still dislike it. Whether I need a ride or a few extra bucks, I resent it.
Ever since my diagnosis, my life has been filled with prescription medications and doctor appointments. Coping with the mood swings of bipolar disorder can be tough. One week, I am energetic and excited. The next, I am lethargic and depressed. On top of the mood swings, I have to remember to take medication, make it to doctor appointments, and refill my prescriptions on time.
Because of stigma, I hide my diagnosis from most people. Usually from my employers and acquaintances. I don’t want anyone to think less of me. I don’t want anyone to pity me. In my day to day life, I try to keep my personal issues to myself.
Keeping my problems to myself can make me feel alone, though. When I’m depressed, I lay around and overeat. I feel like a burden. It’s hard to ask for help when I’m struggling. That’s why when I came across the Circle of Support feature on the Health Storylines app, I felt the weight of my loneliness lift a little.
My Circle of Support includes my sister, my grandma, and my boyfriend. These are the people who understand my mental health struggles. All I had to do was send an invite to their email asking them to be apart of my Circle of Support. They accepted and registered their account.
Now, all they have to do is log in to the Health Storylines app to see how I’m doing. Messaging them through the app is so much easier than approaching them face to face. Having a specific place where I know I can ask for help makes it so much easier to do so.
It’s a relief to remember that I don’t have to do this alone.
August Blair is the founder of Survival is a Talent. She is a freelance writer, blogger, and social media strategist. She is passionate about health and wellness, social issues, and the environment. She studies Communication at The University of North Georgia.