Hello and welcome to the inaugural issue of Woe: Mental Health Tips You'll Hate From The Saddest Woman In the World.
This first tip is the most hateful one of all, and I'm sorry, but it's important and we may as well get it out of the way now: you have to try.
You have to try. Sure, you may get lucky and find a med or several that make trying much easier, and if so then count your blessings, please, I beg you. Sure it sucks to have to take a med, but lots of people have to take meds for lots of reasons; if you've found meds that make it easier to live your life well I entreat you to do whatever you need to get over whatever qualms you may have about taking psych meds.
When I say you have to try I don't mean try without help, I don't mean turn down meds. I don't mean pull yourself up by your own bootstraps. I don't mean reject therapy, reject support, reject time off, reject someone who reaches a hand down into the hole in which you have found yourself and gives you a lift up.
And I don't mean try so that other people can see that you're trying, to satisfy their understanding of what trying should look like. No one but you is in a position to know when you are trying or not. Some days trying might look like going for a run or a walk, some days it might mean managing to brush your teeth and change your underwear, some days it might mean that you never even get out of bed but at least you're not also yanking out your hair and some days it means you're yanking out your hair curled up in a fetal position in bed but at least you're not drafting a suicide note.
No one else knows whether you're trying or not, which is frustrating, yes. Other people will always have their opinions on whether you're trying hard enough. Their opinions are not your concern, but you still have to try.
You have to try, and it hurts, and you still have to do it. You can hate it (I told you you would, it's hateful) and you can gnash your teeth and throw things and cry and rage, but you still have to try.
No one but you can save you, can look inside your mind and see what you need to do to route around whatever suffering it's causing you, to ameliorate it, to do something different with it, to live a life you value despite it.
I had a friend who killed himself and I wrote a book of poems about it and there's this line in one of the poems: " I learned in Group once that you must play the hand you’re dealt, but you threw all your cards down, dealt me a game of 52 pickup."
Trying means you don't throw all the cards down and leave them for others to pick up, you play the hand you're dealt the best you can. It might be a really shitty hand, but it's the only one you've got, and only you can play it.