I’m struggling with something, and I think it’s because I’m having trouble explaining it but it’s making me feel guilty and embarrassed for the way I feel and, I’m just so confused. But hear me out.
So I have a friend who has recently started taking antidepressants, which I’m glad about I’m glad they are getting the help they need. But I’m kind of angry at that person too.
You see I was telling them about my medication, how exhausting Quetiapine has been, I even explained to them we would have to meet later in the day because I struggle to get up early with it. But her response was “yeah fluoxetine makes me tired too” So, the first thing I felt was shock, then anger and then I was just sad. Because I really wanted to say “look, they are completely different.” but I couldn’t explain it in a way where I didn’t sound like I was trying to say that my mental health is worse than hers.
I tried to explain this to a friend earlier and I talked in circles I explained how I feel guilty because I feel like my thought pattern is “I’m sicker than her.” but I don’t think that’s what I mean. After a while, I kind of realised that maybe I was just upset with my friend in general.
I’ve always been very mindful of my friend’s anxiety, left places when things have got too much for her, let her leave me alone in the town centre to go home, I have made an effort to accommodate my friend’s mental health, taken the time to learn about her specific anxiety. And maybe that’s because I’m very interested in mental health and I like to help. But also it’s because I understand what its like to have anxiety, and I don’t want her to feel like that because she’s my friend. But, I don’t think she has done any research into my mental health at all.
You see when I explained that my medication flaws me sometimes, it just seemed like no big deal to her. But it’s a big deal to me, a really big deal. It’s taken me years to finally get a bipolar diagnosis, it’s taken me years to be treated as a bipolar patient.
Quetiapine is not just something I take for my mental health, for me, it’s my last chance. If this doesn’t work, I’m scared my doctor will give up on me. That he will just rule me out as a suicide case and not bother treating me.
This medication is so much more than just another pill for me. Its a matter of life and death for me, I realise that sounds dramatic. So when my friend just played my exhaustion off as nothing but a side effect “everyone” experiences. It hurt.
And so maybe my thoughts weren’t as embarrassing and elitist as I thought, maybe they were just sadness that someone who I have tried to make feels comfortable and to learn how to help them. Doesn’t want to do the same for me, they just want to believe that all mental health patients are the same.
Thanks for listening to me guys.
The Elephant in the Room