A question I get a lot, especially if going to any kind of health related appointment is, “do you have a support system?” Sometimes, they want to know specifically who you consider your support system. Often times, I feel like I don’t have an answer that they would find suitable for someone with my mental health related “issues”. They want you to name family and friends or professionals that you turn to, especially when you are going down the spiral.
The truth is, I don’t feel supported by anyone 100% of the time. I keep having these feelings of wanting the support, but then feeling selfish in having those wants because afterall, I am not a priority to everyone. Much like, everyone cannot be a priority to me (even despite my best efforts at putting them there). We all have our own shit, our own problems to deal with. Should we really be required to announce a support system, especially if we feel like we are really our one and only own support system?
I mean, I get it, the idea of a support system is definitely nice. However, when I am finding that the only true people who are there in support, are the ones going through similar stuff themselves, it makes it all the more difficult to rely on anyone for it. We don’t want to be the negative energy that someone else has to take on when they are already dealing with their own things.
There is still, unfortunately, a giant stigma around mental health. People don’t understand it. People think that it can easily be fixed, when 99% of the time it is much more deeper rooted than a simple fix can do. People claim to always be there to listen, but are they really? I don’t expect anyone to be at my beck and call 24/7, though like I said, the idea of that being possible sounds nice.
As much as I would love to say, “rely on that family member or friend”, you have to be able to rely on yourself. You know yourself best. You have to be willing to take any avenue possible, even if that means going alone, to be able to find what works for you. Just because someone won’t actively engage in your struggles, doesn’t mean you can’t find another way through it. You can be your biggest fan and there is no shame in that!
I guess all I am trying to say is, it is okay to be your own support system. It’s okay if you don’t have an adequate answer in the minds of professionals on who your support system is. It’s okay to keep fighting for yourself because you are the only one who really can.
Find ways to empower yourself. You can do it, just take it one step at a time.