Having a mental illness is exhausting. A lot of your day is filled with survival strategies and trying to calm your inner troubled self. I often joke that I don’t have children because I’m too busy trying to parent my own inner child all the time. It’s a 24/7 job. People with mental illness who have children have to parent their kids AND try to nurture their own inner, wounded child making it extra tiring and overwhelming.
Here are a few ideas on where you can find some emotional support:
If you have one or two friends or family that you can trust and feel that you can talk to when things are down, great. You’ve got a solid foundation of support. If on the other hand you don’t feel close enough to any of your friends or family, you may need to look outside of your friend zone for support. You may be able to find an empathetic listener from your counsellor, therapists, teacher , instructor, professor, coach, financial planner, salon, spa, barbershop, real-estate agent, family lawyer, etc. If that isn’t helpful, you can always look for online forums or chat rooms and community groups to join that share similar issues or similar interests. You can usually find online groups through an internet search (ex. Google:online support groups for anxiety and depression) . You can find community groups through your local library, town’s website or 3-digit number (ex: Halton’s is 311) , or websites such as meetup.com . There are also many free local or national help lines you can search and call when you need to. Some cities and town’s offer free counselling sessions, and other times your family doctor can be a good source of support when needed. Finally, reading other people’s blogs and personal struggles can also feel like a sense of support because as you read their stories and struggles that resonate with you, you will feel a sense of bonding and empathy with that person.
Online fourms (Examples):
Local Services (Examples):
Help Lines (Examples):