When the bad days come along, the world around you carries on regardless. Yet the little bubble of stress, trauma or depression encompasses you, leaving you feeling helpless and frustrated that the most simplest of tasks can suddenly become the hardest.
Throw in a tremendous sense of shame, and the risks of spiralling further down in to a deep depression or anxiety attack become more likely and terrifying to the individual who's suffering.
Your interpretation of the world becomes misconstrued, imaginary threats start to appear from nowhere and your self belief starts to whither away, morphing in to self doubt that perhaps you really are useless and now you're going to be found out for the imposter you really are.
Sound a little extreme?
Unfortunately it couldn't be more true and affects thousands of people on a daily basis. It's a terrifying place to be for the person experiencing these events and perhaps even worse is the underlying thoughts of humiliation if they tell someone how they're really feeling.
We can perhaps never truly know how someone is feeling or understand those intrusive thoughts that come and go without warning, but what we can do is show a little empathy and try to put ourselves in their shoes for that moment in time. You could make a difference for that person just by being there and supporting them when it's needed the most.
I can remember my amazing neighbours would tell me to always call them if I was having a particular bad spell if I was on my own, but the sad thing was that inner voice telling me how humiliating it would be and they were probably far too busy to really care. Obviously that couldn't have been further from the truth and when I'd told them about these times afterwards, they were upset that I hadn't made contact. These are the dangerous times for anyone struggling with mental health problems and somehow we must try harder, but I don't have all the answers.
If you're reading this and can relate to what I've said, ask yourself these questions;
Do I have telephone numbers of friends / family I can reach out to no matter what?
Will I promise myself to reach out when things get tough?
Those moments in time that seem the darkest of all are just fleeting and they will pass. Please stick with it and keep talking to those around you, because you are loved and you are needed. I promise you that talking helps, even just venting what's going on at that moment in time, it will reduce the pressure inside your mind whilst letting others know that you're not ok and need some help.
We all need a little help sometimes and that's ok, just don't carry the burden alone because you don't have to.