Thanks for replying. I’ve done the cheerful thing too so as not to inconvenience anyone and because I was socialized not to be a bother. However, the mouth may smile but the eyes don’t lie.
Owning up to my vulnerability has been oddly freeing. By giving myself permission to be whole, warts and all as the saying goes, connections have happened. Your comment, for example, proves this point.
Sure, it annoys some people that I dare let it all hang out but that’s their problem, not mine. I happen to think the world would be a better place if we could all openly talk about what ails us, and that this openness could ultimately save lives.
Stigma only serves to perpetuate silence and shame, and why should anyone be ashamed of being human? The human condition isn’t a pathology!
FWIW revealing my truth has backfired on me, too, but ultimately it’s a small price to pay for not having to pretend anymore. Now I can focus on trying to move forward rather than hiding. Eventually, when I’m stronger, I’ll try to mend those bridges with the people who chose to look away, one of them being my parent.
You sound like a warrior, which probably means you’re also very tired of fighting. I get it, but if the people around you won’t listen, find those who will and keep using your voice. We’re here, all over…
Sometimes, random strangers can be incredibly supportive. Random kindness does exist and happens when you let others see you.
Thanks again for your words — and the TED Talk link — and please hang in there!