Post # 1
I made the conscious decision not to go Anon, but this may be my last post if this gets the responses I am expecting.
So, my daughter goes to a private Catholic School, I suppose I have always maybe felt a bit of an outsider, I think it shows I may struggle to pay the school fees a bit more than everyone else. Recently I admitted to a Mum who was worried about her anxiety attacks that I am a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic. Her reaction was “But you’re so normal” now, that’s fine, o get it all the time. I told her I hadn’t had an episode in over ten years and how I take my medication when I should, I am completely fine.
I guess I told her because hers and my daughter are close, if there was ever a play date at my house, her parents do have a right to know. Now I’m worried I might have stuffed everything up for my daughter with my word vomit.
What if she gossips?
What if she isn’t allowed to be friends anymore?
Why am I so ashamed of myself? I wouldn’t apologise for being a diabetic. I wouldn’t feel guilty for having a limb prosthesis.
Am I reading too much into this?
By the way, I am aware about the irony of my wondering and stressing, lol.
This topic was modified 3 years, 11 months ago by sandy85.
Post # 2
sandy85: Unfortunately, there is still a lot of misunderstanding and prejudice with regards to mental illness. Most people are not aware that many of these illnesses are caused by a chemical imbalance. They are also not aware that there are many high functioning schizphrenics everywhere.
I disagree that she had any right to know about your diagnosis, but I think you have the right to share as you choose. I think all of your feelings and concerns are perfectly normal.
Good luck to you and your daughter.
Post # 3
sandy85: I totally understand going over and over in your head about what you said and how it may change things. But really, you shouldn’t be too worried about it until that mother actually takes action. I.e. not letting her child come to your house or something.
Until then I’m willing to bet you’re probably overthinking it a lot more than she is. And understandably so, I do the same thing. If you two are pretty close I’m sure she’ll take into consideration what she actually knows about you from your actions already and won’t just decide to take on a whole different view because you confided in her.
I’m sure everything will be OK 🙂
Post # 4
Hopefully, she’ll show some compassion and won’t go around blabbing it to others. I agree, your concern is normal, but things might be just fine. Since she has a mental condition herself, maybe she’ll be able to empathize a little more.
Post # 5
sandy85: I’m sorry there’s still so much stigma around mental illness. I’m studying to be a therapist and even I caught myself feeling suprised when I read a report on the mother of children I was working with that mentioned she was schizophrenic. I think mental illness is still so misunderstood. Partly because the media misrepresents it, especially schizophrenia, so often. I hope this woman is understanding and doesn’t do anything to make you feel bad.
Post # 6
Another schizophrenic over here! I also get the “You seem so normal!” stuff too. Like, what did they expect? For us to be pulling out our hair and running into walls?
I’ve found that most of the people I tell don’t really look at me any different, but there are always those select few who perpetuate the stigma. I say don’t let whatever her reaction might be (if it ultimately ends up being negative) affect you. YOU know the truth about who you are and that’s what matters. Plus, if she’s really going to be a jerk about your illness, then that’s probably not the kind of parent or child that your kid should be hanging around anyway.
Post # 7
A fish would never have gotten caught if he never opened his mouth. People do not know anymore than you tell them.
Post # 8
I am sure when this woman confided in you regarding her anxiety, she was telling you trusting that you would not gossip about her or judge her for being open about her condition. Given that, I hope she would give you the same respect. From your account of things, it doesn’t sound like she took your confiding in her in a negative way, so I don’t think you did anything wrong.
As PPs have mentioned, the media has portrayed schizophrenia in a way completely different from what it actually is. If for some reason she does take your openess and decides to keep her daughter away from your daughter, I would use the opportunity to explain what it really is, how it affects you, and again reassure her that you have it under control.
I understand feeling anxiety about the situation, but I hope it turns out to be unecessary anxiety. =) Hopefully the next time you see her and her daughter, you will get reassurance that you did nothing wrong with being open and that it has not affected your relationship with her or the relationship between your daughter and her daughter.
Post # 9
2good: what a pointless and unhelpful comment
sandy85: hopefully this woman has enough sense to not let it alter her behaviour towards you and your daughter. I guess the best you can do is try not to worry about it until there is evidence that she is reacting badly. I think it’s understandable that you are stressing about it more than you would if you had something lile diabetes because of the ridiculous stigmas associated with mental health problems but hopefully this woman will react well and be a positive demonstration than attitudes are slowly changing
Post # 10
I am both a mental health case manager and a mental health consumer. I understand why you’re worried, most people don’t know about me, and some of it is because I’m scared of reactions. I have many schizophrenic clients, and have even been asked if I’m afraid to work with them. Um, nope. My clients are having symptoms actively, but they are not dangerous simply because they are mentally ill. I mean, yeah, some of them are experiencing psychocis, and that can be hard to witness. I’ve seen behaviors like repetitive motion, rocking, even eating grass out behind our program. However, that is not the typical experience of mental illness, and I commend you for being brave enough to show that to someone. The best way to change perceptions is by being as open and honest as is comfortable for us. It’s hard to hide. I feel like a fraud so much of the time, because my cleints don’t know. I’m actually looking into peer specialist certification in my state so I can be “out” in my professional life.
Post # 11
2good: The fish would also starve.
Post # 12
2good: true, people don’t know what you don’t tell them. This woman didn’t know that a diagnosed schizophrenic could be a high-funstioning member of society and a good wife and mother, so I’m personally glad she was told. The cure for stigma toward people for mental health diagnosis, race, gender, sexuality, whatever, is for the majority to learn and accept, not for those that are “different” to hide in shame.
Post # 13
It’s a catch 22; people won’t realize their stereotypes about people with well managed conditions are wrong until they realize how many people in their lives have those conditions. On the other hand, the first few people who lay it out there to say they have those conditions are going to be negatively affected by those stereotypes. It was very brave of you to mention it to that other mom, and hopefully it changed her view of schizophrenia.
Post # 14
Mental health sufferer over here too 😀
i think it’s brave and admirable for you to tell someone about your illness. I suffer from sever Anxiety band I’ve been shunned for it, even on here.
Mental illness hangs onto you like a cancer and i even got accused of using my anxiety as a excuse/crotch (all because I asked about my partners past and explained I was having anxiety attacks assuming the worst) I was told that I was bang of order and I anxiety doesnt work that way. This was coming from a Bee who never suffered from it. I was livid/distraught. If I had cancer, would I be using it as a excuse?
When people suffere from physical diseases you often see a physical symptom. When your dealing with a mental illness there’s no scans or bruises to display. Do people can’t make that connection.
I get so sick of hearing ‘try not to worry’, ‘keep your chin up’ …. Oh Jeeze like we never thought of that! because we must enjoy living with this demon everyday of our lives and it’s our own faults for not simply being happy/ normal.
Peoplr struggle to understand the physical effects of mental illnesses. When I have a panic attack it’s honestly the worst physical pain I’ve had in my entire life, sometimes the pain has been so unbearable that I’ve passed out, lost control of my bladder and projectile vomited all in one hit. It’s not a case of she needs a paper bag. I needes an ambulance who shot me up with tranquillisers…. But hey according to some mental illnesses are ‘just an excuse’. Easy to say if you’ve had the pleasure of never experiencing it.
I have never suffered nor know anyone who has suffered from your type if mental illness. But I have so much respect for you for speaking up. I’ve recieved the ‘looks’ the comments of ‘well everyone worries, it’s no big deal’…. Sure and waking up in the middle of the night because you’ve convinced yourself aliens have landed and it’s armageddon outside. So you lay there to scared to move and wet the bed. Seriously this is shit we have to deal with everyday.
Not saying everyone is blind sighted to mental illnesses there’s some fantastic supportI’ve here on Bee but some just have to really think and do their research before commenting. Also bare in mind, mental illnesses can happen to ANYONE at any TIME. So don’t bite a hand that you might need feeding from in the future.’
sorry for the rant but it’s a subject I hold close to my chest! I don’t have any advice on your fears other than maybe speak to your doctor about your anxieties as Id hate for you to develop a second mental illness.Well done and I’m very proud of you!
Post # 15
I have severe bipolar disorder and major depression, and have been on medication for it my entire life. I finally stopped being so shy about it recently, because you know what? I’m normal. I have held down a full time job and been on my own since 18. I’m indepedent. I just have to take medication to balance my brain out. It’s no different than being diabetic, or having asthma. I will never understand why people who have never expirienced a mental illness (god bless them) will always have a stereotypes that makes us look like we are awful people, or lunatics. I have several friends who have schizophernia (sp), and they are even better off than me. If she gossips, shame on her. Especially since she has a mental disorder as well. That would be the pot calling the kettle black.