An open letter to the silent victims of my depression and anxiety: my kids and husband.
I know my anxiety and depression is hard to live with. I know I’m not the only one who suffers from it. Because it also affects you.
I see your faces when I say, “No, I don’t feel like doing much today.” Or, “No, I don’t feel like getting out of bed until 12 in the afternoon.”
I see the disappointment on your faces when I snap a little too quickly. Or get a little too nervous going out with you.
I see the sadness in your faces when I can quickly turn something that is supposed to be fun into something planned, anxiety-filled, and nerve-wracking.
I know it can be hard to deal with. I know I can never “go with the flow”. I know everything needs to be planned out. I know I always need to know what exact time we are leaving, who will be there, and what we are doing. I know I don’t like surprises.
I know the focus can be on me a lot. Making sure I am comfortable, making sure I’m not anxious or overwhelmed.
I know we don’t talk about how you feel about it a lot.
I know you have had to miss many things because of me.
But what I also know is that I probably wouldn’t be here without your continued love and support.
I know my mental illness also affects you.
I know sometimes you just want to ask me, “Why are you like this?!” But you don’t. You know “Mommy just gets nervous or tired sometimes.”
I know you get angry, sad, and mad at me. But you never say anything to make me feel less than.
You are the reason I cope with my mental illness.
I live with it. I have good days and bad days. Because of your support, I have more good days.
I know you are the silent victims in my mental illness story, but I want you to know you’re the main part of why I still continue to fight.
I know my anxiety and depression affect you, too. Mental health affects the whole family. Not just me.
But, for now, I say thank you. For being the rock I need. For being the most supportive family.
I know you suffer, too, and for that I am sorry.
I am trying.
This post originally appeared on Caitlin Fladager
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