How my Mental Illness has Benefitted Me

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While looking online, I always see the negatives of having a mental illness. People post why they hate their mental illness and why they wish they never had it.  A lot of the post that I have seen focuses on the negative aspect of the illness and not what they have learned from it. This has got me thinking about a couple of things, one of them including how I believe my mental illness had benefitted me. Now, I know that this is throwing myself out of the complete spectrum from other people but hey, sometimes a person must do what they got to do. Below, I’ve compelled a list of how my illness has benefitted me.

  1. It helped me to become more compassionate towards others. I have noticed that when it comes towards others, I am more compassionate. I relate to people more than what I have ever before and tend to be more empathic towards their problems. It could be the smallest thing and chances are, you will get empathy from me.
  2. Helped me to become a great listener. I’ve learned that along with being compassionate, I have also become a great listener. I am more than willing to listen to a person’s problems and comfort them whenever they need it.
  3. Once placed on my medicine, my true personality bloomed.  Yes, that is right. My true personality actually came out with my mental illness. People actually saw who I was as a person when I was placed on medicine rather than being that shy, awkward person.
  4. I am able to show more emotions. I am more accepting of my emotions and therefore, I am more willing to share my emotions with others without caring what others think about them. I’ve broken down in front of people before but it has proven that yes, I do have emotions just like everyone else and I am not as emotionless as once thought.
  5. I am unique. Everyone who has a mental illness is unique within their own way because each person who has it has a unique symptom. Also, let me add to the fact that people who tend to have a mental illness tend to be rather interesting people in general. Their lives are full of stories, some that others cannot even imagine.
  6. I have matured as a person. I have grown as a person dealing with all that I have dealt with. With all the struggle and pain that I have dealt with, I have grown into a strong and rather independent person, someone who can be admired by a lot of my peers and by people who do not know me. It makes me proud to be me.
  7. It has showed me who my real friend were. That is right, it showed me who were the people who were there for me and not just faking it and I am grateful for it. Yes, it was hurtful to lose some friends but you know, I am glad to have a close, tightly knitted friendships that I do.
  8. I have become an advocate for those with Mental Illnesses.  This is a big one for me, especially with all the stigma that happens around. I have become rather outspoken with my mental illness and I am not afraid to tell people about them. It is something that – in my mind – if I educate people, the more understanding people are going to be able mental illness itself. Society needs to see people who suffer from mental illness in person, not see it from the media. That way, it helps in order to prevent any negative stigma from generating. Negative stigma means people who have mental illness refuses to seek the help they desperately need.

So this is my list that I have compelled. There are more positives but my mind is incapable of thinking of them at the moment. Please, let me know what you think!

Online Dating – Dating with a Mental Illness

Of course, my most favorite subject of all. Online dating. Now, if anyone knows me, online dating has been a complete dud for me. The reason why I have signed up for it was due to the fact that I am incapable of attracting people. I am socially awkward in general. You could flirt all you want and call me beautiful and I am one of those who is more than likely to hide behind my friends in shame. Now, it is not because I do not think of myself as attractive for I am an attractive person (in the picture below, I am the one in the yellow). It is just with my illness, it makes it different for my mind to figure out how to interact normally within a situation.

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Anyways, back to the topic on hand, the dating site has been a popular trend and it is something that I have decided to try. Well, let’s just say that it has been interesting. There are a couple of things that I have learned about them, which I will get to. As for the sites I joined, it was Plenty of Fish, OkCupid, and Match.

When it comes to creating my profile, I wanted to be as truthful as possible but what about my mental illness. Should I include it or not? Well, I decided to include it, just to see what would happen and how many people would respond. To be honest, I don’t think half of the people read profiles at all. Seriously people.. read the profiles – they are there for a reason! Second of all, I enjoy intelligence in a man and well, when someone in talking in chatspeak it doesn’t show any promise for me. Yes, there were a lot of polite people on the site but I was looking for more. Oh and let’s point out that a lot of these people were very sexual. I’m asexual and when you start commenting about how sexy I am, you are already turning off my switch.  I would also like to point out that there were people who were not as polite as I would have imagined them to be. One even called me crazy due to my illness.

After agreeing to meet a couple of the guys who were more into my standards, I agreed to meet them. Each date was interesting to say the least. I was as awkward as I could be -which I apologize to any man who had to deal with me them – but they were more than willing to put up with me. I was stood up once, which I should have known that due to the warning signs that he gave me.  Some of the dates I went on a couple of times but out of all the dates, nothing came out of them. It is as though I have failed at the whole dating scene in general or maybe, it is just the dating scene that has failed me. As for the dating sites, I have not given up on them and I am still hoping to find my soulmate. Maybe he might be out there, floating far out of reach.

What I learned from Dating Sites:

So while on the dating site, there are things that I learned. A lot of them helped me to understand myself and how to deal with the people on them.

  1. Get to know a person on the site. Don’t just jump right into meeting a person right away. Get to know that person over the site before your actually meet them. That way, you get to understand their personality.
  2. Read and reread their profile. Please read their profile. I am begging you. Well written profiles are the best and can really help you to get to know a personality of a person and whether or not you will like them.
  3. When on the date, don’t expect it to be love at first sight. There are a lot of times in which I thought I would fall madly in love with a person only to get bored with that person. Love takes time. Sometimes, you need to hang out with a person multiple times in order to gain some feelings for them.
  4. People lie on their profiles. Unfortunately, people do lie on their profiles and it is you who needs to figure out the truth.
  5. People can be cruel and judgemental. If you thought social media was bad, you have never been apart of the online dating world. People are literally judging every inch of you and looking for the best person out there and if you have a flaw that they do not like, they are more than willing to let you know about it. Again, I was called crazy on one of the sites, which really hurt my self esteem.
  6. Trust your instinct. If you do not feel comfortable in a situation, chances are it is not a situation that you should not be in. Trust your feelings.
  7. Be yourself. Don’t try to be someone else. You are unique and your own person. To those who do not accept you, they are not worth your time. There is no point in making them happy when you yourself are not happy. A real relationship is when both parties involved are happy and not just one.

Hopefully, this post was interesting to someone out there. If you have any interesting dating stories to share, comment below and share it with us. Hope everyone has a wonderful day!

Character Creation – Roleplaying

There comes a time in which one must release some of the tension that happens within their mind. I get asked a lot of the times what I do in order to stop my mind for my rapid thoughts. To be honest, it can be a rather hard process in order to control. Once a thought is within one’s head, it is really hard in order to get it out. One way I do so is by creative writing (or character creation) through the use of roleplaying.

Now what is roleplaying?

There are many forms of roleplaying out there but the type that I am referring to is a form of written roleplay, which is taking a character and writing a story with other people. It is a relaxing and helps to improve many of the writing skills that some people may lack on. Not only that, but you can learn and improve on your skill.

By making a character, you are taking him/her and creating his/her environment in which they are apart of. Not only that, but you are also involved in creating their thoughts, emotions and actions, which in turn helps to create this environment that they must work around. It might sound difficult in order to understand or rather boring but it can be rather exciting, especially when you get someone with he same excitement as you. Plots can help to move a story along, adding more drama to the plotline and adding more history to your character. The more history a character has, the more well rounded that character is.

Now, I know that I did only a brief overview of what roleplaying was and how enjoyable it can be. In order to actually understand it, one really needs to try it. I suggest finding a site which is more than willing to teach you and take it from there, that way you can enjoy the many successes that come from it.

Happy roleplaying!

Allow Me to Introduce Myself..

I am Amanda. A daughter, a sister, and a friend. Lover of nature, hiking, and wildlife. I am known for my love of photography as well as my free spirit. When one first meets me, you could assume that there is nothing wrong with me – that I live a happy and simple life.  How far from the truth that person is..

I am Amanda and I have a  mental illness (multiple illnesses, to be exact).

Now, you might be one of those who are currently feeling sorry for me, who wish that I felt better and wished that I was a so called “normal” being. Truth be told, from my illnesses, I have learned a lot more than what most would have imagined. I have learned how gracious and kind the human heart can be as well as, in the opposite spectrum, how cold people can be. I’ve learned that stigma is a great hurdle of mine, one that I bound to leap one over the other. I am bound and determined to teach others about the invisible illnesses of mental health and why it is so important to understand and care for those who have. To allow them to walk within the shoes of those who suffer daily with the constant battle of their own mind – the constant war they face against it.

I am Amanda and I am a fighter.. And I am here to allow those to see through my own eyes.