Friday, 6 November 2015

Losing Control

Albus Dumbledore is without a doubt, my favourite Harry Potter character.

Why? Well, although he is completely fictional, some of my favourite words are of lines of his.

Of course it's happening inside your head, but why on earth should that mean it isn't real?

I've written a few times on here now that I consider myself recovered from Anorexia, but that doesn't mean my interest in mental health has decreased. Quite the opposite really, as I love nothing more than to try and help others, even if it's simply offering an ear to talk to. Someone joked with me the other day that 'we're the crazy ones' and I immediately thought that I'm actually not crazy any more, but really I never was. Although we joke, crazy isn't the word we should use to describe someone suffering from a mental illness.

Mental illnesses aren't just us going crazy. They are illnesses of the brain, caused by a number of reasons (changes in our brain chemistry, genes, personal life events, blah blah..). Ultimately, they develop and we don't have control over that. It's like our brain has been invaded and we can't really stop it from happening. 

Imagine that you're a puppet being controlled by someone else. You have no say in what you do or say. Terrifying, right?

That is kind of how it's like to live with an illness you have no control over. The difference is, mental health cannot be seen which makes it one million times harder to both admit to and talk about.

I've recently come to realise that the fear of losing of control is present amongst many mental illnesses. It certainly was for me but I just assumed that was a characteristic of Anorexia. I was so wrong because it seems to crop up over and over. If only we talked more and shared stories, the more we'd learn and overcome, eh? 

And this is why I love Dumbledore. I still meet people who think they're crazy for fearing being out of control. Just because it cannot be seen doesn't mean that it isn't real. Just because someone else doesn't understand how you're feeling, doesn't mean what you're feeling is shameful. And just because it's going on in your head doesn't mean that what you're experiencing doesn't exist. 

It's very real to you and that is what matters.

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