Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Yesterday I began to wonder what I was thinking by coming out as having bipolar disorder. Had I made an irreparable mistake? Had I invited stigma my way, which I can never get rid of?

What caused this sudden questioning of my openness and desire to fight mental illness stigma? I didn't get a teaching job that I desperately wanted. I started wondering and worrying if that was the reason that I had gotten my jobs back that I had before I became sick in the summer. I lost all faith in myself and what I've been trying to do with my life, which is to be transparent and educate people the best that I can from the perspective of my experience. Up until yesterday's "rejection," I have felt great about living without shame and not wearing masks.

Fortunately, I had a brief realization, and the realization was that if ever I don't get hired because of my illness, although it may feel personal, it's ultimately not about me, I'm still myself. It's about the other person and the judgments that they may or may not make about me. In essence it's their problem not mine, even though it affects me greatly.

I was probably overly sensitive yesterday, thinking the worst, that I had been rejected because of bipolar disorder. I had a brief moment of feeling stigma followed by feeling washed clean. The cleansing that followed, was worth all of the insecurity and pain that I felt about not getting the job I wanted.

So, I'm going to continue to write even when I get paranoid that I am bringing potential harm my way. As long as I am comfortable with myself and don't hide out of a sense of shame, I will be okay, in fact, I already am. 

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