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Lack of caring can create unthinkable tragedy

Throughout my life, I have done and said things that I regret.


From self-inflicted injuries to other people, I find it problematic to count all the regrets I have had throughout my life.

I feel accountable for each of these regrets, which have deeply hurt the people I care for in my life.

I think of my days growing up filled with joy and how they contrast to the stark worlds I encountered in later adolescence to adult years.

The inner world of jubilation and joy I once experienced as a kid lifted as I approached my teenage years and made life more complicated. I felt utterly lost as I left a life of innocence to a dark cloud. Spontaneity and freedom of life were no longer present as early as 16 years old.

Now at 39, I have more than half of my life to look back on.

Best described as bipolar or schizoaffective illness, which has been a significant player in the changes I experienced throughout my life. Other factors are rooted in abuse issues from peers or lack of recognition for counseling or additional support.

In any case, is it a return of an earlier version of myself that I need? Or is it perhaps something at a higher level- the love of others and a higher spiritual level that I could connect to more fully?

However, the placement of extreme moods in my daily life has made it difficult to arrive at this peace of mind. Additionally, the interaction of these moods with medicine and mental health practitioners complicates my level of functioning.

Therefore, the importance of counseling and mental health to help others emotionally must be made clear to those who need the help. To make statements like “pick up your bootstraps” or ‘be strong’ is simply the wrong approach. If mood and behavior issues are present, it is essential to address the problem, not exacerbate using inappropriate language.

In my case, I spent well over five years in my childhood suffering in silence before being able to talk to a mental health professional about my thoughts and feelings. I had no idea what it meant for me to be experiencing what I was.

The trauma of these unaddressed concerns left me in the wrong position the second half of high school. The effect of my unaddressed needs as an adolescent was to leave me hospitalized repeatedly and in an unconscious state at 25.

So, yes, I feel bad for the wrongs which I have committed. However, I think it’s fair to say that most of this did not need to happen. The biggest culprit is untreated mental illness. It is the delay in treatment that had the worst effect on events, even years later. Also, this is true for countless others.

When treatment is stigmatized and the reality of severe mental illness is not recognized, there will continue to be instances of heartache and preventable tragedy.

A loved one’s heartaches need to be listened to by people who care. Lack of caring can create unthinkable tragedy.

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