Why I’m Writing
I’ve been asked why I’m writing this blog. I’m writing this blog to give people- especially people whose family members have a mental illness- an idea of what it’s like to live with a mental illness. As a card-carrying member of the mentally ill population, I am in a perfect position to spew forth a plethora of information on various aspects of mental illness.
I don’t claim to have the market cornered on the perspective of the entire population of people with mental illnesses. I’ll be the first to say that my perspective is representative of me. Although I speak as someone with a mental illness, I don’t claim to speak on behalf of all people with a mental illness. Nobody can make that claim.
When the hospital made the diagnosis in May 2008 that I had a mental illness called Bipolar Disorder, my family was confused. Since no one in our family had ever been diagnosed with a mental illness, the entire concept was foreign. A mental illness? Her? What was Bipolar Disorder? What did it mean to have it? What was it like to have it? What impact was it going to have on our lives? Was it something that you got a shot for? Got over? What could we expect?
Even as I was being involuntarily committed to the mental hospital, my family had no real understanding of what that meant. What was involuntary commitment? What did it mean to be involuntarily committed? How did you get involuntarily committed? How long did it last? What was it like? There was very little information out there that would help my family understand what was happening to me.
All of these questions and many more needed answering. And yet there were very few answers to be had. What was needed, I realized, was someone who could speak from personal experience on these matters. Who better to undertake that effort than me?
But my blog doesn’t stop there. It has become my own personal sounding board for all of the things that I think need saying. What about the HIPAA laws? Are they good or bad? How does mental illness stack up as far as illnesses go? What about smoking? Anxiety? Psychiatrists? These and many other mental illness-related topics are all fair game.
My opinions, it goes without saying, are my own.