As I sat in a room asking what I thought was a perfectly attentive question in midstream a member of that group physically turned their back against me and not for the first time that morning , engaged the room in their conversation leaving my question hanging and me feeling like yet again that l was invisible.Not important. I am not invisible and I am important. I removed myself from the room. New boundaries.
Living with mental health is an invisible world. Being in someones world whilst they are experiencing mental health issues is also entering into an invisible space too. It can have a dramatic impact on health, confidence and subsequent relationships. What if you are a child with no understanding of this impact, not understanding the concept of mental health, with no boundaries to protect yourself from its affects? Factor in those suffering with the illness are there supposedly to protect you. I hear you. I see you. I am you.
Entering the ‘ grown up’ world with no boundaries, not given any, allowed any as mental health, someone elses mental health consumed not only theirs but gobbled up the potential of you establishing yours too, the difference…you are a child. You are now an open, vulnerable and gullible adolescent still being abused as you have no boundaries to say no with. You have no concept they exist , that you are supposed to have them.
Becoming a victim is a choice it is said. “you can choose not to be one.” Perhaps, you come, in time, to accept it , whatever, IT is and you find a way to overcome the effects of it. Thats not to trivialise it and is certainly not to say its either easy or is a quick, clean task. At 55 I struggle. I do know as I started to make my own boundaries clearly define them to myself, what is acceptable and what is not, irrespective of others acknowledging them, my sense of well being has started to change. I feel more powerful, in control to stop this cycle. It involves a lot of painful painful disassociations, that strangely feel liberating once done and I start to live with the consequences. Not nearly as bad as I anticipated because in truth, my attachment to a person, or situation was already lost, gone as there was no respect there. If there was I found the relationship changed for the better.
No one should be made to feel invisible.
No one should feel its ok to be treated as if they are invisible.
Without asking, Judgements are made to my face and I, having no boundaries , swallow hard again, dutifully following the ’advice’ again in a different direction. I am exhausted from hearing, ” well, what you want to do is…”As humans why do we feel so self righteous that we have got it so right as to judge others?
Minority groups, animals, the environment… to name but a few are victims to this damaging behaviour.
To be Kind. To actually ask and listen. Give someone your full attention without judgement if only for a moment. Be humble, grateful. With the first thought of good not bad.
Make the invisible visible whoever or whatever they may be. Its called respect surely. Behind each face ’mask’ is another story to tell than the one you are seeing.