Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
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21-11-2017, 01:58 PM
Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
Hi everyone,

To give a bit of background I'm seventeen years and I live in a religious, pretty conservative household. I've had depression and anxiety for almost as long as I can remember, and have dealt with self-harm and suicidal thoughts in the past. My family doesn't believe in mental health, so therapy isn't an option for me right now, and my dad, who is the only person in my life who keeps me sane, is never around due to work and other obligations. I also suffer from chronic loneliness due to a pretty limited social life (I only see people three times a week MAX and have no close friends, plus a lot of the friends I do have are mentally ill/toxic) and my home life is not the best either. I've also been the target of emotional abuse by multiple people in the past and live in fear of running into another abuser or becoming one myself. It also doesn't help that I'm forced to stay mostly closeted as a bisexual out of fear of what my friends and certain family members might do if they found out. Lately, I've been having strong urges to cut and know that it's only a matter of time before I hit rock bottom again. I'm getting scared and have nowhere to turn.

If anyone has coping mechanisms that have helped them get better, or even just kept them from harming themselves until they are able to get help on their own, any advice you have would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I hope you all have a wonderful day.
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21-11-2017, 02:07 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
*hugs* Can you talk to a school counselor?
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21-11-2017, 02:18 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
Wow, I'm so sorry that you're dealing with all of that. Hug You deserve better.

You said that your family is very religious, but that your father helps keep you sane- but just isn't around. Is he someone you could talk to, or is he religious/anti-therapy, too?

Are you home schooled? Is that why you're shut off from others?

Sorry for all the questions.

As for coping mechanisms- maybe drawing or writing? Or finding a place on the internet that helps people with depression/anxiety/self-harm? You are not alone. There are many out there. Some of us, here, have dealt with those issues.

While I haven't dealt with cutting, I do deal with depression and anxiety. They are lessened by medication and therapy. Art was probably one of my biggest outlets for my depression growing up. But it didn't help forever. Get professional help as soon as you possibly can. It needs to be a priority as soon as the opportunity opens up, since you can't right now. Consider calling a suicide hotline if you ever feel suicidal or if you begin cutting again.

Eventually I poured myself into my religion as a coping mechanism- but that hurt me more in the end.
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21-11-2017, 02:23 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
(21-11-2017 02:07 PM)jennybee Wrote:  *hugs* Can you talk to a school counselor?

Unfortunately not Sad the joys of being homeschooled
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21-11-2017, 02:48 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
(21-11-2017 02:23 PM)404ReligionNotFound Wrote:  
(21-11-2017 02:07 PM)jennybee Wrote:  *hugs* Can you talk to a school counselor?

Unfortunately not Sad the joys of being homeschooled

If you have a good rship with your dad, could you try talking to him?
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21-11-2017, 02:49 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
We can try to offer support here, but you might also get some professional help from a free service such as the Crisis Text Line, described here https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the...-free-help

Here's another online resource for finding help for little or no money: http://kidshealth.org/en/teens/mhealth-care.html

In the meantime, making friends online is a way to help keep yourself sane and to remind yourself that there are kindred souls, even if they live halfway across the planet.

As well as using art or something similar to cope, my suggestion would be to spend some time plotting your escape. Think about where you want to live once you're on your own, what kind of job you want to do, what kind of life you see for yourself once you are independent and surrounded by kind and supportive people. That can be as grand and far-fetched as you want. Then think of how you could move yourself a lleeetle bit closer to that vision.

I hope your parents are okay with you going to college someday. Even if it's a religious college, you'll have more breathing room there.
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21-11-2017, 02:50 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
Hey sorry you have this hard time.
Can you pick up some sports or something like that?
You talk about urges to cut, have you done it so far or are you curently able to resist? The urge to cut often comes from wanting to feel oneself and the same principle goes for other forms of selfharm as well. That is why I asked if you could do sports, because then you'd feel yourself too but you wouldn't hurt yourself.
About talking, you got us here. I know it's not the same as real life friends, but online is better than nothing, right?

"Freedom is the freedom to say that 2+2=4" - George Orwell (in 1984)
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21-11-2017, 02:50 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
(21-11-2017 02:18 PM)Emma Wrote:  Wow, I'm so sorry that you're dealing with all of that. Hug You deserve better.

You said that your family is very religious, but that your father helps keep you sane- but just isn't around. Is he someone you could talk to, or is he religious/anti-therapy, too?

Are you home schooled? Is that why you're shut off from others?

Sorry for all the questions.

As for coping mechanisms- maybe drawing or writing? Or finding a place on the internet that helps people with depression/anxiety/self-harm? You are not alone. There are many out there. Some of us, here, have dealt with those issues.

While I haven't dealt with cutting, I do deal with depression and anxiety. They are lessened by medication and therapy. Art was probably one of my biggest outlets for my depression growing up. But it didn't help forever. Get professional help as soon as you possibly can. It needs to be a priority as soon as the opportunity opens up, since you can't right now. Consider calling a suicide hotline if you ever feel suicidal or if you begin cutting again.

Eventually I poured myself into my religion as a coping mechanism- but that hurt me more in the end.

Hey thanks so much for the reply, my dad is also religious but he's not like the others and fully supports me going to therapy once I move out. Unfortunately, he has no authority in our household and can't do anything to help me even though I've been talking to him about this for years. He's been extremely supportive though and has helped me in every way he could during the harder times.

I'm homeschooled, although I go to classes twice a week and have music class on the third day during band season. But the classes are really small and I don't really fit in there at all which is why I have so few friends :/

I can relate to that all the way. I use music and writing as an outlet and often find myself playing for hours and hours until I injure myself. Thankfully most of the colleges I'm looking at have free counseling so that's where I plan on going once I get out of high school. Religion was another outlet for me a few years ago, but ultimately it made me a lot worse as well. So glad you were finally able to get out of that situation and get help. I wish you all the best and hope you continue to get better.
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21-11-2017, 03:28 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
I'm so sorry you're going through this, with so little support. I too suffer from severe anxiety. When I was your age, my parents, who are also religious, practically blew it off, even though I was in constant, growing fear. The nurse at school did nothing for me. I was too embarassed to turn to anyone else. It got to the point where I started contemplating suicide, which was ironic because my fears were based primarily on my mortality.

It took a mental breakdown in the middle of a restaurant to get my parents to realize this really was a problem, and I finally started getting help.

Fast forward 6 years and I still struggle with my anxiety, but it's far more bearable.

But, in that time, even before medication, I've learned how to cope with it,,,for the most part. It's awesome that you write. I drew to cope.

You don't even need to write/draw about anxiety, it just helps to have an avenue where you can express yourself and vent your emotions without talking to anyone.

I also started meditating. You don't have to sit criss-cross on a mat chanting 'OHHHMMM' to meditate, I usually just go outside and listen. It's even better if you can hike a ways from civilization and listen to the sounds of nature.

Then there's this forum. Even though I'm separated from everyone here be it by hundreds or thousands of kilometers, they have helped me, whether it be advice or a place to vent. Keep posting here. Don't bottle things up.

Most of all, though, please seek professional help, even if it's only over the phone. There's only so much that writing and meditating can help. You might even need medication.

I wish your parents could be more understanding and get you the help you NEED. It's just awful that mental illness is brushed off so often because it isn't always visible, UNTIL things blow up.

Hang in there, and keep posting here. We'll always listen Hug

Ignorance is not to be ignored.

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21-11-2017, 03:30 PM
RE: Mental Illness- Coping Mechanisms and Advice
(21-11-2017 02:48 PM)jennybee Wrote:  
(21-11-2017 02:23 PM)404ReligionNotFound Wrote:  Unfortunately not Sad the joys of being homeschooled

If you have a good rship with your dad, could you try talking to him?

I've been talking to him about it for years and although he doesn't have any power in our family so there's nothing he can really do, he acts like a friend and lets me vent a lot, which does a lot to help me feel less alone during some of the worse times. He's also been really supportive of my choice to seek help once I've moved out of the house and can make my own decisions.
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