It’s nice to meet you! My name is Sarah, and I have a mental illness. If we have this trait in common, then you’ve come to a good place. I started this blog for you and people like you because I want you to know three things:
1) You are not alone.
2) You are not hopeless.
3) You are not helpless.
This blog will feature practical advice and information about coping with mental illness, straight from the front lines. In the Survival Kit, you’ll find information about resources to help you survive the struggle, from tips on fighting insomnia to a comprehensive list of crisis hotlines. In the Survival Skills section, you’ll find active strategies you can use to improve the quality of your daily life, including posts about how to enjoy exercise (no, really!) and how to remember your medications. And in the Mad Money section, you’ll find tips on managing the financial aspects of living with mental illness, including information about managing mental illness in the workplace and getting your insurance company to pay for your medications.
Right now, you may be afraid that the rest of your life is only going to be about suffering. But I’m here to tell you from personal experience that life is about so much more; it’s about striving in the face of great adversity and surviving despite the odds. You won’t find any flowery, sugary “hang in there, sport!” or “pull yourself up by your bootstraps!” bullshit here; people who give that kind of advice have only the most superfluous experience with mental illness, and I’ve always found it only serves to further my distress. What you will find are strategies backed by data and vouched for by someone who’s tried them. I plan to tell it like it is, but always with the underlying message that it is possible to live with mental illness – to live in the fullest sense of the word – and not just to suffer from it.
I’m right here with you. And if I can do it, so can you.
(To read a tentative schedule of upcoming posts, click here or click the link in the sidebar. To read the story of my journey with mental illness, click here. To read my pledge to you, the reader, click here. If you have any questions or comments about any of the posts, feel free to leave them; I’ll make every effort to respond. If you’d like to share your story or request a post on a specific topic, you’re welcome to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.)