Does Mental Illness Define Me?

When mental illness takes over your life, it’s hard to stop is taking over your sense of self as well.

It’s very hard to not let it define you. Sometimes my depression and anxiety is all I can think about. It’s like a coating of dust over everything about me. Especially when like me, you’re off work and dedicating most of your time to getting better.

I have moments where I don’t trust my thoughts or feelings. That’s not a surprise, I’m trying to be critical of my natural reactions to things at the moment as a way to get better and think more rationally. But sometimes I feel a bit lost. I can’t figure out whether my thoughts and feelings are fair for me to think or feel. I don’t know whether I’m being irrational or rational or not. I don’t know how to make decisions at the moment, and I don’t know how to progress. Do I follow my thoughts and feelings right now? Will I regret anything when I start to feel better?

But this leaves me in a really confusing place. If I can’t trust anything I think or feel, then what am I meant to do? Nothing? Or everything? What if they’re not effected by my mental illness but I don’t act on them or allow myself to rightly feel them?

It’s so hard because I want to believe in myself and I want to get better but I can’t trust myself and I don’t know what to do. I don’t want my mental illness to define me, but I don’t know which thoughts are because of it, or not.

I suppose that’s why people do say that their mental illness is a part of them. They can embrace themselves, mental illness and all. But then does it define you? Do you become lost in your sickness? I want to be me, and I want to find what that is without worrying if my mental illness is changing it.

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