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Monday, 3 April 2017

Living a hidden life

For years, it's as if I've been living a double life.

My secret life where I take medication, go to doctors appointments and turn down invitations with excuses because I'm seeing my therapist or I need to be alone to cope with whatever's going through my head.

My secret life where I say vaguely mutter 'I left uni for a year because I was ill', rather than say that I had an all consuming breakdown, depression and an eating disorder which left me housebound, reclusive and dependent for months.

Drawing by me 

I already felt a huge sense of shame about myself. But living a secret life where I didn't feel I could tell the truth compounded this shame.

I have started to become more open and tell my truth retrospectively. But sometimes the shame feels so big the words get stuck in my mouth and I look at the ground and mutter something that feels like a lie.

Honesty is very important to me. More than ever, I am able to speak my truth and I'm finding the people who like me for who I am actually am, rather than who I feel I have to present myself as.

Drawing by me

Leading a secret life with a mental health condition or illness can be extremely hard socially. I hope everyone reading this finds their own way through the difficult social aspects of their experiences.

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