When I look back over my life from where I am now, I wonder why it took me so long to consent to medication. I thought I could “muscle” through these times with lots of will-power. I am a “stubborn” German who thought I was a failure if I admitted I could not do it on my own. I did not realize how I was affecting my loved ones during these times. They had to walk on eggshells so often. With the medication, along with learning many different effective coping skills and going to therapy, I have been stable for well over 3 years. I have a few blips during the course of a year, especially when the seasons change, but with the help of my monthly therapy appointments and lots of self-care and self-compassion, I am able to weather those times with minimal disruption to my daily life. . .

It is due to this history that I chose my current career. I went back to school to get a Master of Social Work degree. I am a licensed school social worker in a small charter school. Several of the students I work with have anxiety, depression, bipolar, OCD, schizophrenic traits, borderline personality traits, rage, suicidal ideation etc. Many are on medications, see a psychiatrist and/or psychologist, and/or have mental health case managers. I am there to help them process through crisis moments and teach coping skills. I want to make a difference, one student, one person at a time. I advocate for us that have mental illness and do my best to educate to reduce stigma.

Trigger Warning:  Talk of eating disorder.

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