I discussed in my last blog post about a need for validation. When you have trust issues, depression, anxiety, and you mix it in with loneliness, it’s a recipe for disaster. Not trusting people, but always being lonely leads some, like me, to constantly seek out validation from others. There is a need to be reminded you are cared for, loved, and important to someone. All of us need reminding of this sometimes. And that is ok.
When an individual who seeks validation, but has problems trusting people, it can be hard to become close to anyone. I’m the type of person who believes the best in everyone, but will always distrust you until you give me a reason to trust you. I can be naive that you only tell me something to make me feel better, but you don’t really mean it, but maybe that’s just my trust issues peeking through. But when I trust you and you tell me something, like I’m family or you like being my friend, I will believe you. I will take it to heart, and I won’t forget. Only when your actions prove otherwise does it begin to hurt me. When it begins to hurt, it becomes world-shattering.
For someone like me, it’s hard to trust people, and difficult to know who to confide in. I have two best friends I tell everything to, even my deepest feelings I may have trouble expressing to my therapist. With as much trust issues as I have discovered I have, for me to confide in a friend means something very important: I trust you, and I trust you not to hurt me.
I have mentioned over and over how important, how imperative it is for someone to have a support group of some kind. Everyone needs someone to go to for support. We are social human beings, we need others sometimes to help pick us back up. For me, my support group has always been my best friends, a professor, my therapist, and a coping mechanism I’ve developed since I was 12. Without a combination of these things, I may not have survived to be 25. When you become part of my support group, it is never a one way thing…I will always be there for you, and I hope you would trust me to be there. I dedicate a part of myself to make you happy, whether it is through birthday/holiday cards or a baked snack every now and then. I go out of my way to show my appreciation because I know how difficult it is to deal with me. It’s hard for ME to deal with me. So, I show my appreciation through simple gestures, even if it’s driving two and a half hours to see you after months of being too busy to meet up.
For me to put my trust in someone means a lot to me. When that trust is broken, it hurts a lot. It makes me second guess everyone in my life, everything you ever told me, and every action of yours. It is literally Earth-shattering for me because being a part of my support group means so much more than supporting me.
Then, there are times where you hurt me, but I forgive you regardless. I continue forgiving you because the thought of ending the friendship is too much to bear. It is hard for me to take that proactive step to protect myself because I truly want to believe you meant everything you said or did during those good moments.
There’s a reason why I am taking the time out of my day to write a post on this. I see every day people, even without mental health problems, being hurt by people. And for a person with mental health struggles, it can be worse. Everyone needs a friend or two, but for someone with mental health struggles, it can be a requirement for survival to have one person to go to. To be beat down by that one person is fuel to a fire that they are already trying to keep from spreading. I have seen many, many times someone with mental health struggles turned away or beat down because they cannot control their emotions, actions, speech. Being happy is not an easy choice for someone with depression. Relaxing is not an easy choice for someone with anxiety. I had a friend who struggles with concentration because of her ADHD. She can’t tell herself to study for her exam or focus on work without extra help from medication.
Of course, this is different for every person. However, using this against that person is wrong. Would you tell someone in a wheelchair you can’t be friends because they can’t go on a hike with you? Yes, it’s not the same situation, but you see what I am saying. One day, I hope to make a mental health awareness blog for people who don’t suffer from it themselves, but would like to know how to support their friends/family with those struggles. It is so important. Saying something in the right way could go as far as saving someone’s life. You just never know.