Listen to Doctor Dumbledore.

Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?

I love that Dumbledore quote. I try and keep it as a mantra about my own mental health, to help me to see that what I experience is valid and real. Trying to view a mental health disorder in the same way I view physical disorders is still difficult for me. There is something of the stigma that trolls me about it. And yet right now I’m facing the closest thing to definitive proof that I’ve ever had. A medication that works.
I’ve been on my new pills for a couple of weeks now. I was wary of them as they are atypical antipsychotics and sounded a little hardcore for little old me but their effectiveness has been undeniable. I have more energy, I have clearer thoughts and I feel happier. So. Much. Happier.
My psychiatrist had said to me that the therapeutic/self help element to my getting better couldn’t start until biologically things were more stable and yet I’d still lost faith that they could be. I still kept thinking that I needed to try harder, needed to be better.
We need to stop thinking mental health is about strength and trying hard and realise it’s complicated, often biological and very very real.
You wouldn’t start physio on a limb that was still snapped in two so why attempt therapy on an unstable brain?
I’m very glad I have a medication that seems to help. I’m now faced with fear that it will stop and the unease I get at needing medication to stay well (more stigma trolling me) but at least I know there is hope. That it is real. And that there is a place for (the right) medication.

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