How Being Strong Almost Destroyed Me


Cathy's Voice Now


I saw this picture/statement on a facebook post from an organization that works with families and individuals facing challenges of mental illness.  Often, we read these simple statements, smile and say, “Oh, isn’t that sweet,” without really thinking about the message.   What I read in this statement is, “Suffer in silence, don’t ask for help, and God forbid, don’t tell anyone!”

I was raised with that philosophy.  Tears and fears indicated lack of faith in God.   Accepting help was a sign of weakness and asking for help was a sign of a failure.  Accepting help made you a slave to the one who gave the help.  In my family, there were definitely strings attached to accepting help and in some cases ropes or chains.

Fighting battles no one knows about was a way of life as a child. I learned to cry in private or not cry at all.  I…

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