Happy Monday, Everyone!
I am so excited, because today is World Mental Health Day! Today is the day that we celebrate all of the work that has been done to support those with mental health issues and mental illness, while also sharing our stories about what struggling with mental health is really like. The pandemic has done well to highlight mental health, and since the pandemic started, there have been huge efforts to highlight the benefits of therapy and psychiatry services. Unfortunately, the pandemic has, and continues to, take a huge toll on our collective mental health, so a lot of work has been done to encourage others that it is okay to reach out and ask for help.
I’ve struggled with my own mental health for the majority of my life, but it came to a head in August of 2019. I was first hospitalized for suicidal ideation and planning during this time and was subsequently diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. Following this hospitalization, and for the past three years, I have been in various partial hospitalization services, intensive outpatient programs, and outpatient therapy and psychiatry sessions. Throughout this journey, I have been further diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, complex post-traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and multiple eating disorders. Learning how to live with my symptoms and manage my mental illnesses has been quite a challenge but sharing my story about my symptoms has helped me to find purpose in my pain by helping others.
Despite how far we have come with mental health, there is still such a stigma surrounding it. A lot of my work is shedding light on illnesses such as borderline personality disorder and schizoaffective disorder that receive more stigma than others, by educating people on what having these illnesses is really like.
I have also begun to offer mental health coaching and online courses on how to develop the skills necessary to manage your own mental health.
To view more of my work, visit my Flowpage:
The majority of my articles on my various mental illnesses can be found here: https://themighty.com/u/ashleynestlermsw
Today is the day, more than ever, to share your own story about mental health and mental illness, and I would love for you to share your experience with me. Leave a comment on this page with your story, and I will be sure to get back to you. The more voices we have, the more we can beat the stigma surrounding mental health and spread that message that it is okay to reach out and ask for help.
If you are in need of help right now, please remember that you can always reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling, texting, or chatting to the number 988.
You can also find various mental health resources for yourself or a loved one by going to NAMI – The National Alliance on Mental Illness
I see you and I support you. I know that living with mental illness and mental health problems is not easy, but you are not alone. Please let me know how I can further support you, and I hope that you find some comfort in my own articles and work. We are all in this together.
Ashley Nestler, MSW