Shouldn't I be happy? I have three healthy children, I have a wonderful husband, I have supportive friends and family, I have a roof over my head and a vehicle to drive, yet I'm so full of anger, so much anger. Every night I am mad at myself for yelling at my children, for losing my cool for reasons that don't warrant such anger.
When it comes to Movember and men's health, the focus has typically been on prostate and testicular cancer. However, there is another common male medical condition that has been relatively overlooked: depression. Clinical depression is a costly and debilitating condition that affects approximately five per cent of the Canadian population in any given year, and 10 per cent of Canadians over the course of a lifetime.
If there is someone reading this who is in that dark place of having a plan -- a plan of how they want to exit this life and when they want to exit it. Please wait and listen to me when I tell you that these thoughts are not with you forever. I know they are excruciatingly painful, but they do pass. I promise you they pass. I promise you are worthy, and that you are not alone. You are loved. You are strong. You are beautiful. You are brave.
The key to my mental health isn't just one thing. It's a combination of many factors all playing an important part in keeping me healthy. Contrary to popular belief, strong mental health isn't just "toughening up," "smiling more," or "staying positive." Let's give the brain a little more credit, it's a far more complex machine than something to solely run on cliché and ignorance.
Suicide is hard. It is hard to even say the word let alone imagine that someone close to you might think that is the only path forward is to take their own life. It's hard to relate, surreal on many levels. But take a minute to imagine. Imagine losing one of the people you love the most by suicide. Does your stomach drop, your heart race, tears come to your eyes or even fear race through your bones?
These thoughts I have are irrational and uncontrollable. They're more than overthinking, and they're more than overanalyzing. Most people will tell me to "stop overthinking" or "if you're trying so hard, you shouldn't have this anxiety." Believe me, if I could stop them willingly, I would. But for now, trying is all I can do.
Investing in friendships is part of a finding a healthy balance in life. We care for and enjoy our friends, but sometimes we might forget to think about how we can secure and grow our friendships. Any sort of investment requires some time and thought. Maintaining friendships requires effort, but when we look at the health benefits of friendships, this effort is worth it.
The diagnosis of PTSD requires that a person has "...experienced, witnessed or been confronted with an event or events that involve actual or threatened death or serious injury, or a threat to the physical integrity of self or others." The traumatic event must provoke intense fear, helplessness, or horror.
My alarm rings, I try to wake up and go out of bed but... I can't: my body feels like a heavy sandbag forced down to the mattress, my mind races, and my eyes traitorously well up with tears. The first emotion is fear. Not that I can't get up but that I could be late for work. I try to leave my bed again. No luck. And yet, my mental block doesn't prevent me from calling to a boss and asking for one day off for health reasons. Depression. It's real.
On the night of Tuesday April 28, 2009 our son died by suicide. As the shock lifted we began the agonizing process of trying to comprehend our new reality. Our 23-year old son had lived with a robust disease that had been brewing for years. He was a strong, intelligent young man; however, even he could not see where his path was headed. Mental illness is a formidable foe. Our tragedy is his absence from our ordinary lives. We are now referred to as survivors. What exactly we are surviving is unclear. We are broken in so many places; trying to put the puzzle that was our life back together. Only now, the pieces do not match.
Our daughter Maddie tragically took her own life at the tender age of fourteen and forever changed the lives of our family and friends.... Maddie's Mom, our boys and friends have made it a personal mission to tell our story, bring greater awareness to youth mental illness and help create better access for those families currently affected by this troubling disease. With all this attention being paid to this illness, largely promoted through the likes of social media, are we fuelling the fire and putting the idea of suicide in our youths' heads?
Panic disorder is associated with anxiety that continues after the panic attack has resolved. Patients with panic disorder worry about having another attack or that they might lose control. Sometimes they fear they're suffering from a serious medical condition that hasn't been diagnosed. As a result, they change their behavior to avoid situations that might provoke another attack.