This morning, i was reminded of two people who didn’t respond to my most recent communications to them. one person who has been a consistent friend for several years has apparently just decided to ignore me, and move on (it’s been several months since he blatantly didn’t respond to a text I’d sent to him). The other person didn’t respond to my asking her if she’d ever thought i might be dealing with a mental illness (we had worked together very closely, and to my mind, she has witnessed my instability the most). I guess i so wanted confirmation that what i am feeling inside is actually happening; i wanted to have it confirmed by another person. But of course, she didn’t respond (several months ago also). No one wants to be the one to say, yeah, I thought you might be mentally ill.
My immediate thought after remembering these two occurrences was to realize that not hearing back from these people was clear enough to be taken as the feedback i have so been craving. That yes, indeed, i am complicated to deal with — that is what puts me on the pathalogical side of the normal-vs-pathalogical scale. People avoid people with mental illness because they don’t understand what we go through, and because they are afraid. Part of me can say, “So be it.” The people in my life who mean anything to me understand and are supportive. They are not the people who disregard me or write me off, or who can’t figure out what to say so don’t say anything and disappear out the “back door.” It seems healthy for me personally right now to stop making excuses for them, face the reality of the situation of being mentally ill (with a new understanding of what that is), draw some clear “lines in the sand” figure out how to live within them and maybe eventually learn to push and expand their boundaries with some good old advocacy and social activism around the misconceptions of mental illness.