How it feels like to be mentally ill

It is a parasite that devours its prey in never-ending pain and sorrow. It slowly feeds on insecurities and mostly from words that pierce right through you and break you into pieces. They say, train your ears to filter the good from bad, but how do you when their actions speak louder? It makes no difference.

Lying in bed for weeks and wishing the angel of death could visit you before you take matters into your hands. Having to pretend to the whole world how “okay” you are yet you are dying inside. They say you should open up but when you tell your story everyone has an opinion on how you should feel and react.

How would they know if they are not walking in my shoes? Like falling into a deep dark pit with no ways to save yourself it is. You hear people pass by and think, oh well, some will reprimand me for not looking where I was going while others will simply hear you and ignore you. The rest will condemn you for making noise. Mental health is a self-battle that only you can get yourself out of. It might never end but at least you can learn to live with it.

We all have different ways of coping with situations. Some may turn to drugs, alcohol, acts of rebelliousness, dark poetry or simply shutting off the world. It is not your job to judge because you know not of anyone’s demise. We are all fighting our demons within ourselves.
Do you take the time to check up on your friends? Like really check up on them? Your family members? Those goofy classmates that you find annoying? Or it is none of your business? Does it not become your business when they finally commit suicide and you pretend how much you knew them? Do you not question why they never said anything about their condition yet deep down you know you would not have done anything about it?

It is not easy to shut the voices in your head that tell you you’re not enough, you do not deserve anything good the world has to offer and how the world would be better without you. We all keep quiet to protect our loved ones from the pain that comes with seeing our breakdown with no way to explain what is going on and how useless they might feel when they realize they have no way to help you.

Counseling is an excuse for people to earn money. They pretend to help you yet they know the painful truth that they are looking for food to put on their tables; making ends meet like everyone else. Many who go through it can tell you they eventually had to pretend they were getting better to get out counseling sessions.

“I am depressed” is our national anthem. It has been made a laughable situation,its sad that as we watch our news we hear of young teenagers committing suicide. It simply means no one can be spared. No one is safe from this scourge.
Boys grow up knowing that men do not cry. They are not to express their emotions and are to keep all that pain and frustration inside. Imagine stocking a balloon with air and keep on blowing air into it. Eventually, it bursts. Bottled up emotions finally burst and the outcome is never pleasant. That is why there are endless stories of men killing their families and ending theirs too.
My only wish is that one day people actually take mental health seriously as it may be the solution to all our problems. Loving our neighbors as we love ourselves. Teaching our children the act of brotherhood and being our brother’s keeper. This is only achievable by being selfless, not living a double-side life and doing to others as you will like done to you.

This is a worldwide emergency but we are all blinded by the slogan ‘everyone for themselves, God for us all’. Humanity might be domed. Who will save us?!

About the author

Writer and student lover of coffee.  Follow Pennie on Instagram or read more articles from Pennie on Fellout Afrikana. Get Updates by subscribing to our mail list below.

Pennie Mwinga
Pennie Mwinga

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