Why Your Family’s Mental Health Matters

We live in the comfort of our homes with our family. They have always been there for us from as early as we were born. However, for some of us, this may not be the case. After all, a family is not limited to having a father or a mother. It is sometimes extended out to our relatives or to someone who has adopted us. Such a presence in our life can have lifelong effects in the future. Have you always wondered how your family’s mental health could affect you? Here are four ways how.

Damaged Relationships

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When someone is mentally ill, it affects factors such as communication and actions. They keep themselves in the confines of their thoughts and problems. Your relationship as a family is not the only relationship affected by isolation. It also affects your relationship with your friends or partner. Damaging your relationships limits your opportunities in life. Have you ever heard of the quote, “No man is an island?” Social isolation has similar health risks as smoking cigarette or obesity.

Stress Arises

“Everyone handles positive and negative stress differently. And yes, for some, positive stress can lead to a negative response to stress, depending on the situation.” Jessica Harris, LCPC, LPC used to say. Knowing that one of your loved ones is struggling with a mental illness can be very stressful. It can become tough when you take care of them while balancing your everyday tasks. Stressed people often share the same experiences when managing their mental health. It can build up tension in your homes making your home feel very uncomfortable. Stress can also have significant physical effects on your body as well. Certain studies have linked stress to heart disease and high blood pressure. It is also known to lower your immune and digestive systems.

Affects An Individual’s Growth

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For example, since you were always busy with work, you never realized that your son is a victim of bullying. The bullies would laugh at what he wears, thus lowering his self-esteem. They would call him names that were funny to the bullies but were verbally abusive. This bullying continued causing him significant psychological damage. You never noticed this because he always appeared to be okay, until one day you find out that he decided to take his own life. Now, the future you have wished for him has now disappeared. As exaggerated as this example may sound, it is still not too far from happening. Bullied victims have suicidal thoughts two to nine times more likely than non-victims. However, “Not all people who have thoughts of suicide end up acting on those thoughts. But for those who do, generally there is deep emotional pain combined with a belief that things will never improve.” Dr. Chantal Gagnon PhD LMHC explained. 

Exhaustion

Dealing with someone’s mental illness can become both emotionally and physically draining. An individual loses their motivation to do everyday activities due to exhaustion. Lack of motivation can affect one’s lifestyle from schooling to work. It can also affect both their professional and personal relationships. Certain diseases such as heart disease and a weakened immune system may also arise from this. I have experienced this back then, and losing the motivation to do anything often leads to giving up. It taught me the value of moving on and pushing onwards.

Tips For Handling Your Family’s Mental Health

It is tough to watch over a member of your family’s mental health. It can be very frustrating and challenging at times, but here are some tips to help you.

  • Always Get Together

Devote some of your time to bond with your family. It doesn’t have to be every day; a simple Sunday dinner would be enough. Let this serve as a form of a breather for whatever you may be going through.

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  • Communication Is The Key

Try to get informed on how things are at work or school. Make sure to check up on them from time to time. You don’t need to know everything since some actions may tell you a difference in their stories. Encourage them to open up to you from time to time.

  • Keep The Feeling Of Love Alive

Feeling loved gives you a sense of security and healthy self-esteem. Make sure to show your trust and care for one another. Doing this may help develop positive relationships in the future.

  • Avoid Abuse

Abuse is never a good thing. It is capable of mentally damaging your children or partner. You should avoid it at all costs since it is a leading factor for depression and low self-esteem.

  • Be Careful Of Your Actions

“A mental illness cannot be willed away or brushed aside with a change in attitude. Ignoring the problem doesn’t give it the slip either.” Deborah Serani, PsyD said. In some cases, the cause of one’s mental illness comes from their own family. Your words and actions may affect both your children or partners, so always be sensitive. It is essential to take note of how to handle fights. Remember to say sorry sometimes.

  • Knowledge Of Any Existing Mental Illness

We know that some mental illness needs daily care while others are episodic. You will be able to select the appropriate actions to take if you know your loved one’s condition.

Do you want to be more attentive to your family’s mental health? Check out this website regularly for more information.

Acceptance: Moving On From A Break Up Is The Only Way To Heal Yourself

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We were supposed to be staying together, forever. That was the plan. Actually, it was our promise to each other. He was going to be faithful and loyal to me and me with him. Twenty years ago, we made that pact in front of our family, friends, and loved ones. God himself blessed this pact we made. We were wed, and it was the happiest day of my life. I didn’t know that it would change and or that he would break his promise.

He got tired of you as his woman.”

 

My grandfather said that in such a blunt manner that the sting of his words cut me to the core. People get tired of loving other people? Was I so blind that I didn’t see it? What happened to me? Why was I clouded with my love for him that I forgot to put my feet on the ground and check reality as it is happening in the four corners of our home? Why didn’t he say something?

 “We should examine the inextricable role that self-love plays in any and all human connection.” – Clinical Psychologist and relationship expert Molly Gasbarrini, Ph.D.

Is it so easy to fall out of love? I tried my best. I know I did. But like James Ingram said in his song, “I did my best, but my best wasn’t good enough.” I mean, why wasn’t I good enough? I know I am pretty. I may be a bit old, but I am still physically beautiful. I didn’t become overweight. In fact, my body is as slim as I was when we first met. I took care of my health, as well, and exercised several days a week. I wanted to be pleasing to his eyes, and I did my absolute best on that.

“Anxiety is often used as a tool to help you push yourself to your limit of achievement. The downside is that there are often negative meanings attached, such as not being good enough or not valuing rest.” – Kristine Tye, MA, LMFT

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As for my attitude towards him, even his mother told me, “You are such a kind person, Belle.” Does that mean he doesn’t like a kind woman? Maybe he likes someone who is chubby or naughty? Did I bore him to death? I mean, this is me. This is all me. This is all I can be and how I am for him. Maybe, he just didn’t like the real “me.” But he should have been honest.

 

And so, I look at the right side of my bed, and it’s been empty for a while now. He won’t be coming back. That’s what he said. He said he doesn’t love me anymore and that he doesn’t want to pretend. He said he’d been acting for the last five years. Five long years. He should have told me sooner.

 “If emotions become heightened, it’s a good idea to implement a safe word prior to the discussion which indicates that one of the partners needs to take a break,” – Michelle Smith, LMHC

I guess it’s okay. I mean, there’s nothing else I can do but learn how to live life without his surname. Now, it is real. He doesn’t want to be with me, and I have to accept that. I need to move on from that.

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So far, the ways for me to cope is to listen to music whenever I feel bad. I open YouTube and type MISSING YOU by Diana Ross. I also check out Jorja Smith’s TEENAGE FANTASY and BLUE LIGHTS, just to get my groove going. Sometimes, it forces me to dance. Bonnie Raitt was right in her song; I CAN’T MAKE YOU LOVE ME:

 

‘Cause I can’t make you love me if you don’t

You can’t make your heart feel something it won’t

Here in the dark, in these final hours

I will lay down my heart, and I’ll feel the power

But you won’t, no you won’t

‘Cause I can’t make you love me, if you don’t

 

In time, I will get there. I have to be. I need to be. There’s no other way for me to be.

 

Essential Ideas To Learn From Solution Focused Therapy

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From one recipient of mental help to another, I can say that my hat is off to whoever invented solution focused counseling. I have gone in and out of thehealingpath for half of my adult life due to stress, depression, and anxiety, to be honest. I have tried various forms of psychotherapy as well. However, the peace of mind that I am looking for seems to be more accessible now than ever because of this new treatment.

What I realized is that I am no longer clueless about my life goals, even though I am only on my tenth session. Some thingsthat used to depress me can barely bother me at this point. More importantly, instead of going blank when there’s a minor hitch in my life, I can already come up with two or more ways to solve the matter. Karla Helbert, LPC, E-RYT, C-IAYT used to say, “Putting things in perspective and treating yourself with love and compassion can be such a gift.”

How is that possible, you may ask? Well, the credit goes to the essential ideas that I learned – and am still learning – from solution focused therapy.

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  1. Understanding That The Problem Is NOT The Key

“Major life transitions can bring up a lot past memories, increase anxiety, disorder eating and body image, and even though it’s “the happiest time of your life”, depression and other mental health symptoms are known to flare up.” That is according to Brie Shelly, MS, LMHC, RYT. Something that I have never experienced during my treatment sessions is feeling small and weak due to my issues. It is effortless to sense the latter, primarily when you are face to face with a therapist who’s asking you how and when your life started getting dark. Then, the mental health professional may proceed to assess your past, to the extent that you may want to leave the room and go back to your hellhole.

This technique, of course, may work for some folks. However, you should know that the cause of your problems is the last thing that solution focused counselors will inspect. In their point of view, a person’s history is irrelevant to his or her present or future. Because of that, you will be able to overcome any ordeal without remembering your sorry past. 

  1. Change Is Constant

Yes, you may have already heard of this one long ago; it is not an idea that’s exclusive to solution focused therapy. Despite that, this form of counseling can show you how inevitable change can be. It can happen to anybody. In fact, there may not be a single individual on the planet who has never lost a loved one or had to mend a broken heart at some point. Not everyone requires help from a mental health professional, though, since many have accepted already that change is constant.

The good thing is that the counselors will not reprimand you for not realizing it instantly. They will merely guide you until the evolution of feelings or people no longer confuse you.

 

  1. Every Person Has The Means To Resolve Any Issue

It also seemsnatural to take control of your system through solution focused therapy because the counseling experts have no intention of making you feel as if you will perish without them. In truth, they may try to prove to you each session that you are strong enough to overcome your problems. Their only role in your life is to help you see that, as well as suggest possible actions you may take. “A good way to keep from destroying your self-esteem is by keeping negative self-talk in check. Catch yourself before you go spiraling down the hole of negative thought.” You’ll notice a big difference,” says licensed psychologist Cindy T. Graham, PhD.

There is no way for you not to be grateful for it since nobody wants to become treated as patients, regardless of how much assistance you require. You won’t feel like the therapists are not doing their job correctly either as you will notice sooner than later how effective this method can be.

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Solution focused therapy is one of those forms of counseling that you never knew you needed until you try it. Hence, if you are mentally in distress, find a counselor who can administer this treatment immediately.