Exposed ~ I am More than My Diagnosis

Diagnosis, mental health, bi-polar, manic depression, life

My Diagnosis~There are things in our lives that we want need to keep to and for ourselves. It is an innate self-preservation instinct. But there is a time and place for everything in this world. My time has come. I need to come out of the shadow of my past. I have spent most of my life being transparent, except for those few occasions when I am not. Those are tucked away in the dark recesses of my life that cause me shame. Shame of who I am. Shame of a disease. Shame of being nothing more than a diagnosis. Shame for something that I have little to no control over. The world is a judgmental place. There are people who will lie in wait to see you weak or vulnerable and take that opportunity to tear you down. This is my fear. But I forget sometimes that there is also a community out there who will lift you up and support you. Either way, I don’t want to be known for my diagnosis. I don’t want to be pitied, belittled or dismissed because one small part of me is broken.

Diagnosis; I am Broken.

I’ve probably been broken for most of my life; as an abused child of an alcoholic, parlayed into a self-loathing teenager who felt worthless and unnecessary even amongst the facade of popularity and despite appearing to be happy. I became a master manipulator convincing even myself that I was OK; that I was healthy. I hid beneath the remaining remnants and debris that were my self-esteem. You can only smack a little kid so many times before they begin to think they’ve done something wrong. Surely, I must have been doing something wrong to deserve this treatment. The tears eventually stopped and gave way to hopelessness. The physical, verbal and mental abuse had taken its hold of me and the tearing down process had begun without me even knowing it. I only knew that I felt small. I felt unworthy.

I went to college and began drinking a lot, eating near to nothing because I was terrified of the freshman fifteen. The thinner I got, the more people told me that I looked sick, the more I relished in every bit of it. Eating disorders let me feel in control and gave me validation. I know, it sounds crazy. I was. All of my relationships spun out of control, my highs drove people crazy. I was a ball of hyperactivity that you could not contain. It was pointless to try to rein me in; it would only result in me turning on you. No point in trying to help, I thought I had it all under control. Besides, I didn’t deserve this kind of unconditional love. I was unworthy. I went through life like a Tasmanian devil. The lows presented as extreme irritability, mostly with myself but then again I have never been clinically depressed. But the irritability with myself not being able to come down from my brain’s chemically induced high was excruciating. I had a tendency to scream about things, all things and if that were not bad enough, I couldn’t sleep. I had extreme insomnia. Then I met the Big Guy, who cared too much and loved me so unconditionally that he stood in the face of me pushing him away, resisted my distance and saved my life. He gave me a reason to want to be better. He gave me the support and courage to be stronger than the disease, to get the help I needed without judgment or ridicule.

Diagnosis: Bent but not broken

As I started spiraling into the abyss of my own insanity, but having no name for the feelings of propulsion and irritability, a routine visit to my new gynecologist, turned into a life changing, soul saving experience. I boomed into her office, as I did everywhere that I went in those days, landing with a thud. When I walked into a room, my personality demanded you sit up and pay attention. I was loud, exuberant and, quite frankly, exhausting, even to myself. She paid attention and she saw that beneath all of the loud, reckless, spontaneity there was a woman who was broken and in desperate need of repair.

Twelve years ago, she recognized in me what she had seen in her own daughter, symptoms. What are the chances that I would get a doctor who could recognize that pressured speech, random piercings and tattoos could be cause enough to prompt her to ask about my driving, spending and sexual history. She patiently recorded my answers, her kind and gentle face watching my every move as I machine-gunned responses at her. I could see the knowing and understanding in her eyes. But of what was she understanding and knowing? Finally, she told me what she suspected was the answer to my question of why I was like this. She referred me to a psychiatrist and though I had only gone in for a pap smear, I was given the chance to be unbroken.

I am more than my diagnosis. I don’t want to be just a diagnosis. But isn’t that what always happens. Respect from your peers turns into whispers behind your back, your every success and failure are attributed to the disease. Nothing is ever the same. With the diagnosis, you are changed forever. In the end, I have embraced my disease or at least learned to not let it be the only thing that defines me. I am more than my diagnosis. I am coming out of my mental health closet. I am Bipolar I. I am the face of mania. In this world, I am many different things but I am no longer broken. My diagnosis is not all that I am.

Diagnosis: Unbroken

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84 Comments

  1. Naomi  /  2011/10/26, 12:52 pm Reply

    Touching, beautiful and extremely empowering post! We are all broken in our own ways. I’m so sorry for the abuse you lived through and all the ways it affected your life and your self-image. But you must know that all I see when I look at you is an amazingly beautiful, loving, and kind-hearted soul. I’m so glad you had the courage to post this. This post is validating for me and I’m sure many others.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:05 pm Reply

      Naomi,
      Thank you for holding my hand. I was petrified to post this piece.It’s hard to be that vulnerable. I am glad that I have people like you that see past the diagnosis. I’ve been non-episodic for over 10 years but it’s still a part of who I am and I just felt like it was time to share that part of me,as well. XO

  2. LLA_Princess  /  2011/10/26, 12:57 pm Reply

    I hope this doesn’t come across weird, but I am so proud of you for sharing this. It takes such strength and courage to be able to talk about the feelings and things we all “don’t talk about.” Having both dealt with my own personal mental health issues and being an addictions and mental health RN, I know how hard it is to 1. figure out what’s going on 2. accept what we are, and 3. work hard to maintain a sense of mental stability. I hope you know you are a strong and amazing woman and another reason I am glad I found both twitter and the blogging world. ((hugs))
    LLA_Princess recently posted..My Son: Little Lover, Big Heart

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:08 pm Reply

      Thank you so much for your kind, kind words. I was so scared to post this because it’s so personal and many people who know me in real life, have no idea. I mean it’s not like you meet someone for the first time and say Hi, my name is Debi and by the way….my diagnosis. Then there comes a point where it almost feels irrelevant but I;ve had this blog for over 2 years and I feel close to my readers and more than that, I pride myself on my transparency and honesty that I am known for. It just came to the point where I thought my story was ready to be shared.

  3. Tracy@TheComfortZone  /  2011/10/26, 1:01 pm Reply

    My mother is un-treated bipolar. And I look in the mirror often and wonder if I am the same. Thank you for the post. Thank you.
    Tracy@TheComfortZone recently posted..Guess Who??

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:13 pm Reply

      Thank you for sharing. I can understand your fear but you are not your mother. Everyone chooses to react to situations in different ways. I know what untreated and afraid to accept look like…I’ve been there. It’s a hard pill to swallow ( this disease) but it can be treated and you can be normal. Ok, so maybe I am a bad example of normal (LOL) but that’s not my diagnosis that’s my quirky attitude and crazy sense of humor:) If you feel that you might be bi-polar, I would recommend getting yourself an appointment with a psychiatrist who can better assess you. I think it’s better to know than not. I was somewhat relieved when I could give my diagnosis a name. I spend a lot of years feeling completely broken, knowing what I had ( that it had a name and a treatment) made me be able to repair, accept and even grow. I;m always here, to listen.

  4. N Trick  /  2011/10/26, 1:02 pm Reply

    Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing. As a survivor of depression (and now post partum), I can relate and thank you for sharing your story. The more people that share and discuss, the less shame there will be.
    N Trick recently posted..Belly Time

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:22 pm Reply

      Thank you for your kind words. I am so sorry that you had to experience depression and postpartum. I Agree if everyone could be honest and we could all speak freely and come out of our mental health closets collectively, the world would be a better place. If the stigma were removed, people could seek the treatment they so desperately need without feeling ashamed and embarrassed. I can’t imagine what my life would be if I had never stumbled into that doctors office, or she wouldn’t have been familiar with the diagnosis or I hadn’t had met my husband who is supportive..I was very fortunate. I hope someday mental illness can be treated as the physical chemical disease that it actually is and not like something people brought upon themselves or deserve or are being punished with.

  5. Alexandra  /  2011/10/26, 1:05 pm Reply

    I love you tons, and you are wonderful.

    And we could talk forver.
    You’ve made lemonade from those lemons.

    ANd I love you.ee
    Alexandra recently posted..Living Through Childhood Halloween Nights

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:25 pm Reply

      Alexandra,
      Thank you , my friend. You see I am a mystery wrapped in an enigma hidden by a big red nose:)LOL All kidding aside, this was the hardest post I have ever written and your support and love truly helped me. I was so afraid of what people’s reaction might be. It’s sort of like walking into BlogHer Naked but only a lot more vulnerable. XO

  6. l  /  2011/10/26, 1:05 pm Reply

    I hope that this doesn’t come across weird, but I am so proud of you for sharing this. I know it can be so difficult to not only deal with the emotions and feelings we have about our mental health, but also to have the courage to be vulnerable to the public by sharing those “deep dark secrets.” As an addictions and mental health RN, and also someone who personally struggles with my own mental health, I know how tremendously hard it can be to 1. figure out what’s wrong with you, 2. accept whats going on , and 3. consistently work to maintain some sort of balance and mental stability. So thank you so much for sharing this post. It’s another reminder of why I am so thankful to have met such amazing people in both the twitter and blogging world. ((hugs))
    l recently posted..My Son: Little Lover, Big Heart

  7. Jennifer  /  2011/10/26, 1:08 pm Reply

    Thank you for sharing your story. There is so much stigma attached to mental health problems. Hopefully others will read this post and realize they are not alone.
    Jennifer recently posted..Exciting Changes for Crossroads for Women

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:31 pm Reply

      The stigma is what has kept me silenced for so long. When I first was diagnosed, I wouldn’t shut up about it then I realized that though I was just ecstatic that I had a name for the disease, a light at the end of the tunnel…a way to treat it..everyone else just heard…Wah.Wah. WAH. WAH. WAH BI-POLAR. To someone who doesn’t know the disease intimately ( hands on or had some experience with someone who has had it) I am assuming it is a bit frightening. It’s hard to embrace what you don’t understand but I got enough ‘weird looks” to feel like I needed to push it back in the closet or at least not tell everyone I met about my disease. I’ve grown a lot in the past 12 years and now it is a part of me, not what defines me. If my story can help just one person come to terms with their illness and not feel the shame that is associated with it, I will be thrilled.

  8. Polish Mama on the Prairie  /  2011/10/26, 1:11 pm Reply

    This is why I love you and yet have never met you.
    Polish Mama on the Prairie recently posted..Wordless Wednesday: Autumn at the Farm

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:34 pm Reply

      Thank you my sweet friend. Your kind words lifted me up today when I was feeling very exposed and afraid of what kind of backlash this post might garner. XO

  9. Alex | Perfecting Dad  /  2011/10/26, 1:37 pm Reply

    Wow. What a great piece of work and thanks for letting us into your heart. You’re living a rich life full of experience, even though a lot of them are far from blissful. A wonderful vignette into the person who posts pictures of boxing kangaroos every Thursday. Maybe you could punch your diagnosis.
    Alex | Perfecting Dad recently posted..Toddler Rules of Possession

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:38 pm Reply

      Thank you for your kind words. . Funny that you mentioned the Throat Punch Thursday, it felt kind of sacrilegious to write Throat Punch Thursday post after exposing myself in such a vulnerable way but back to the regularly scheduled post right? :) No need to punch my diagnosis. It has given me a greater understanding of myself, the world and my place in it. I am just glad to have a name for it. I would like to however Throat Punch the stigma and shame that is associated with mental illness but then again I don’t want to dwell on my diagnosis. It is not all that I am, it is only a piece of my story.

  10. Jess  /  2011/10/26, 1:44 pm Reply

    You are so amazingly beautiful, Deb. I’m sad that you’ve been through this but so grateful for your amazing writing that you can share this with so many others.
    Jess recently posted..Best Wordless Wednesday EVER.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:42 pm Reply

      Jess,
      Thank you so much for your friendship and your support. Your words mean so much to me. I’ve never been so afraid to hit publish on a post in my entire life. I was so afraid to become just a disease to people who love and respect me but I’ve got so much support that I can’t worry about that anymore. It’s a part of who I am, just like being Mexican, being a right handed person, being a brunette or whatever other genetic thing I might be…it’s part of who I am, not the only thing that I am. XO

  11. Melinda-LooKWhatMomFound..and Dad too!  /  2011/10/26, 2:47 pm Reply

    I’m thinking of you and hoping you get the care, help, support and love you need at this time.
    Melinda-LooKWhatMomFound..and Dad too! recently posted..Wordfull Wednesday – Blog Makeover

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:45 pm Reply

      Thank you. I am fine. I have been non-episodic for over 10 years. I was lucky enough to have had the care, help ,support and love when I needed it back then and I know that if I ever need it again, I am surrounded by a strong and wonderful group of loved ones who will always support and love me.

  12. Tim@sogeshirts  /  2011/10/26, 5:01 pm Reply

    Brave of you to share this Deborah. You are definitely far more than your diagnosis. A truly talented writer and good person.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:52 pm Reply

      Aww, Tim thank you so much for your always kind words. It means a lot that you see me as more than a diagnosis, so many people can not see past the stigma and sensation of bi-polar. There are so many jokes and people refer to anyone who has a strong opinion as being “Bi-polar”, I cringe every time I hear it. It’s a disease, just like diabetes…do people find diabetes funny? I am glad that there are people like you who see people for who they are and past their label. XO

  13. Kalley C  /  2011/10/26, 6:44 pm Reply

    A very touching story. Regardless of what you have gone through in your past, you are a strong, and wonderful woman. Thank you for sharing your story. You are indeed more than your diagnosis.
    Kalley C recently posted..One Foot In Front of The Other

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:52 pm Reply

      Thank you , my sweet friend.

  14. Shell  /  2011/10/26, 7:20 pm Reply

    Wow, you really went through a lot! I’m glad that your doctor was able to get you help so that you could feel better and overcome your diagnosis!
    Shell recently posted..Pour Your Heart Out: When I Can’t Be Upbeat

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:29 pm Reply

      Thank you Shell. IT was such a fluke the way I came to my diagnosis. I like to think that God put her in my life and put me in that place for that very reason. I am blessed beyond measure and I try to remind myself of that daily.

  15. Annaliese  /  2011/10/26, 8:22 pm Reply

    This was an incredibly touching post. I am so happy that you shared this with us. (Had me a little teary towards the end there…) As someone who has only just encountered bi-polar through my husbands side of the family, it is incredible to hear such a raw and beautiful insight as to what it feels like.

    Thank you.
    Annaliese recently posted..“My parents smacked me, and I turned out fine.”

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:28 pm Reply

      It is a hard disease to deal with as a family member of someone who has the disease. I can only imagine how hard. Thankfully, my diagnosis came long before kids and at a time when my husband could listen and be open to let me work through accepting the diagnosis, learning to live with it and learning to live within it..to a degree. I seriously threw myself into the diagnosis, I read everything I could get my hands on, I bought books for my husband , my siblings, my parents explaining the disease and how it effected all of us. I went to therapy, I went to a psychiatrist and got medicated, I had to be honest and I had to trust these people to support me and help me get through. I even took a clinical psychiatric class in grad school..just because I wanted to understand absolutely every detail of what this diagnosis was…is. The key is that the person who has the diagnosis has got to be willing to help themselves work through it and get to a point where they feel healthy and functional. IF they do not, they will be consumed and overwhelmed. I pray for your family member that they come to a place of calm with their diagnosis, and I pray for you that you have the patience and understanding to give them the kindness they may need.

  16. Jessica  /  2011/10/26, 9:42 pm Reply

    What a difficult post this must have been to write. I’m so glad you had the courage to share. I hope you find all of the love and support you deserve. Amazed by your bravery.
    Jessica recently posted..The Woman Who Scares Me

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:20 pm Reply

      THank you and yes, it was by far the hardest thing that I have ever, EVER written and published. It sat in draft for three weeks. I tormented over it but in the end, it is part of me and I needed to share it with you amazing people who I have come to know and have endeared yourselves to my heart.

  17. JW Moxie  /  2011/10/26, 9:59 pm Reply

    Not to sound condescending, but I am so proud of you for writing this post. I can see why you were afraid to write it, but I am so glad that you did.

    “I am not my diagnosis.” Being an infertile (more SUBfertile, to be fair), this statement so strongly resonates within me. I’ve spent much of the past year getting over feeling like a complete failure because my body failed me.

    But I am not my body any more than you are your diagnosis.

    Your words make me feel an amazing sense of solidarity. I am just getting to know you, but I feel like there is some kindred link in standing on our “bent” parts and finding the courage to declare our strength not only in spite of them, but BECAUSE of them.

    You are nothing short of amazing.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:19 pm Reply

      MY friend, I feel the same. We are kindred spirits and we are so much more than our limitations. I agree with every single thing you said. I hate that you had to feel like your body failed you, that is much how I felt before I knew what my diagnosis was. I felt as if I was completely broken as if their was something innately wrong with my chemistry ( in a way I was right) but learning that I could work through it, it could be treated and I could become unbroken…I embraced the bent. I live in the bent and I love it. When we ever meet, know that you are getting a great big giant Gangsta hug:)

  18. Galit Breen  /  2011/10/26, 10:31 pm Reply

    Oh, my heart. This is is so raw, so open.

    I read your words, I heard your heart. I’m listening.

    Much love to you.

    xo
    Galit Breen recently posted..Driving Stories

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:15 pm Reply

      All I can say is XO. Thank you for listening, hearing my heart and reading my words.

  19. BalancingMama (Julie)  /  2011/10/26, 10:43 pm Reply

    Good for you! The more people willing to speak about issues instead of hiding them, the more can be helped in the long run. Hugs to you!
    BalancingMama (Julie) recently posted..WW: Swag from Bloggy Bootcamp!

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:14 pm Reply

      Thank you. I am sure that from the outside, it may seem like a simple thing to acknowledge that you have a diagnosis. It is , in reality. But to expose yourself, to be this vulnerable…is hard. IT is really, really hard. I understand why people keep their diagnosis to themselves, because whether we want to believe it or not, people do look at you differently once they know your diagnosis. They may not even know they are doing it and it’s not intentional but it is what it is. I just hope that people can learn to understand that having a diagnosis is part of who we are not the only thing that we are. I like to joke with my husband that I am in good company..and I give him a laundry list of famous people who have the diagnosis… Catherine Zeta Jones, Demi Lovato, Princess Leia, Vivian Leigh,Sinead O’Connor, Van Gogh, Virginia Woolf, Jane Pauly,Russel Brand,Macy Gray,Edgar Allan Poe….so many wonderful people:)

  20. Practical Parenting  /  2011/10/26, 10:55 pm Reply

    Wow. It’s incredibly brave to share your story here. You are absolutely more than your diagnosis, but what a relief to have one after years of exhaustion. I hope this post reaches out to others in a similar position, and generates more support for you. Certainly you deserve it.
    Practical Parenting recently posted..Halloween Help (Tips for Halloween Safety)

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:03 pm Reply

      Thank you so much for your kind words. You are exactly right, it was relief to have a name for what I was feeling..for all the feelings that I was feeling and not understanding. That was the hardest part. I felt like a square peg in a round hole and it was painful to not understand my own behavior. The actual diagnosis, the name, it gave me a way to understand it, to survive it, to grow and to thrive.

  21. Laura Page  /  2011/10/26, 11:38 pm Reply

    You’re so right–there IS a supportive community there for you. Always. I grew up in a difficult home as well, and have had to deal with the things that grew in my subconscious as a result. It’s taken years and years, and I know I still have a lot of growing left to do. But not being afraid of being seen to be vulnerable or in need was–and is–probably the biggest breakthrough! Keep seeking the YOU behind all the labels and diagnoses. You are–we ALL are–so much more than all of that. :)
    Laura Page recently posted..Going through Academia Withdrawals.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 10:00 pm Reply

      Thank you. Your words mean a lot to me because I can tell that you are coming from a place of understanding and recognition. It is hard to work through our past and become our future. The strongest things we can do is accept what we have endured and then move past it. We can overcome anything, so long as we have the support and determination to do so.

  22. Venus  /  2011/10/27, 9:31 am Reply

    Thank-you so much for posting and sharing!!! You ARE supported here. :-) We are definitely so much more than our diagnoses, but as you’ve pointed out by writing this, we need to be aware and own them.
    I’m so happy that you found a love in your life that gave you the motivation to help yourself – my experience was the same (but with a diff diagnosis).
    Let’s hope that those out there who still need help will find the person or community they need (maybe us!) to help them onto that same road.
    Venus recently posted..Better Living Through Chemistry, Or the Reality That Depression Doesn’t Go Away

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/10/27, 9:57 pm Reply

      Thank you. I agree 100%, we are all more than our diagnosis…no matter what they may be. My husband has saved my life in the most literal of ways. His unwavering love and support have given me the strength to work through the initial diagnosis. I knew he would stand by me no matter what and this made me not be afraid of the disease. It allowed me to not only get the medical, psychiatric and psychological help I needed to be unbroken…but he gave me the space to go through the stages of accepting the diagnosis, learning about the disease, learning to be me within the disease and learn so much about the disease and hwo it affects me and how to recognize it in others that I could probably write the chapter on Bi-Polar in the next DSM:)

  23. [...] Lisa Irwin~ Not going to lie, I am a little emotionally spent after yesterday’s coming out of the diagnosis closet post but this Throat Punch had to be issued. It’s been a long time coming. Baby Lisa Irwin is the [...]

  24. Jen  /  2011/10/28, 12:46 pm Reply

    I am so sorry you had to endure that. But you are absolutely right. You are more than a diagnosis. And the reality is that everyone struggles with something and it is up to us to not let it control us.
    Jen recently posted..Flashback Friday {Halloween}

  25. Bruna  /  2011/10/28, 4:07 pm Reply

    This must have been difficult to write. I had tears well up in my eyes while reading because I know you as the wonderful friend and person I have come to love. I’m so sorry life was so rough for you in your younger years. Thank goodness for finding The Big Guy and for him not letting you go. True love.

  26. dusty earth mother  /  2011/11/02, 1:18 pm Reply

    Incredible. I had to come over after I read your comment on Big Tent and I am sending you love for your courage in writing this. Big love. But not the TV show, just prayerful love :-)
    dusty earth mother recently posted..The Dirty Little Habit That Will Make You Go Blind

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/11/02, 1:36 pm Reply

      Thanks. I’m pretty open and transparent about everything on my blog and there is normally no topic too taboo but this post left me so exposed and raw that it literally almost made me vomit to hit the publish post button BUT, in my heart, I knew I was ready to share it. It was time.Thank you for the prayerful love. It’s been over ten years that I’ve been non-episodic but it’s still a part of me. Some days it feels like it’s been so long since I’ve been diagnosed that it feels like a lifetime ago that it was even relevant.XO

  27. Laura  /  2011/11/03, 6:04 am Reply

    Saw your post on Big Tent and had to stop by. (I’m so behind from being sick.)

    I adore your honestly and willingness to share. You know how I feel about that – truth. You are an amazing woman, an amazing mom and a great person. And yes, SO much more than a diagnosis. Diseases do not define us as people. xoxo
    Laura recently posted..Keeping it classy: Boxed wine and the boxed wine purse

  28. Unknown Mami  /  2011/11/05, 8:41 pm Reply

    You are beautiful and honest. The stigma around mental health needs to stop. You have nothing to be ashamed of, you are taking care of your mental health which is just a part of taking care of your health in general. There is no stigma surrounding high blood pressure or thyroid issues and there should be no stigma when it comes to mental health issues said the woman who has her own mental health issues and is happy that she finally got help. I finally got help because of my gynecologist too. I was pregnant and I needed help and she made me feel empowered for getting it instead of ashamed. I thought I was being weak, she said I was being proactive and responsible.
    Unknown Mami recently posted..Fragmented Fridays

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/11/07, 1:58 pm Reply

      WHo knew those gynecologists were so damn intuitive?:) Thank you for your kind words. I agree, there is no stigma to being diabetic. I don;t know why there is one for mental health issues? I didn’t do this to myself. I didn’t ask for it. I don’t deserve it. It;s not contagious. it is what is it and it is just a small part of who I am. XO

  29. Frelle  /  2011/11/06, 3:09 pm Reply

    Your honesty and transparency are beautiful. Im so glad to know your journey, and that im getting to know you thru your blog and on twitter. You are brave, strong, and beautiful.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/11/07, 1:59 pm Reply

      THank you so much for your kind words. They mean more than you can every imagine.

  30. Alex@LateEnough  /  2011/11/06, 9:14 pm Reply

    You are lovely and brave. And very unbroken.
    Alex@LateEnough recently posted..Another Epilogue: More Popular Than My Blue Hair (Actually It Is More Aquamarine)

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2011/11/07, 2:00 pm Reply

      You are kind and amazing, and your words are more powerful than you know. XO

  31. CHild Abuse, Surviving Childhood  /  2011/11/07, 9:33 pm Reply

    [...] I have been compelled to reveal more of myself to you. It was not intentional. It started with my diagnosis which I was sure I would never share with anyone for fear that it would label me like a scarlet [...]

  32. [...] been through a lot of living in those years; babies being born, moving across the country, diagnosis and several shark weeks and in that way, I kind of am an expert on [...]

  33. Mattie Hester  /  2011/12/10, 4:53 am Reply

    You have nothing to be ashamed of, you are taking care of your mental health which is just a part of taking care of your health in general. I hope this post reaches out to others in a similar position, and generates more support for you. I hope you find all of the love and support you deserve.
    Mattie Hester recently posted..Cancer Tattoos Tumblr

  34. Elliptical Review  /  2011/12/16, 7:55 am Reply

    Strongly suggest adding a “google+” button for the blog!

  35. Reginald Bitz  /  2011/12/19, 10:11 am Reply

    Terrific work! This is the type of info that should be shared around the internet. Shame on the search engines for not positioning this post higher! Come on over and visit my web site . Thanks =)

  36. [...] Exposed ~ I am not my diagnosis [...]

  37. [...] being excelling at being a good example of a the kind of woman I want my daughters to see me as. I will never be perfect, and that is perfectly acceptable, as long as I am living my life as the best me. *This is the one [...]

  38. Jenny, Bloggess  /  2012/01/03, 12:20 am Reply

    Sending you such love, sweet thing.

    • Truthful Mommy  /  2012/01/03, 12:40 am Reply

      And I am sending just as much love to you my friend. I know how badly it hurts when you are in the throes of the disease but you are strong, you are mighty and you are self aware…and more importantly you have an entire community of people who understand and love you, diagnosis or not. XO

  39. SoberJulie  /  2012/01/07, 1:56 am Reply

    Love love love your soul!
    SoberJulie recently posted..Friday Funny~A 6yr old & an iPad

  40. Tobias Kroese  /  2012/01/12, 5:05 pm Reply

    I’ll right away snatch your rss as I can not in finding your email subscription link or e-newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Please let me realize in order that I may just subscribe. Thanks.

  41. [...] understand pain, feelings of failure, loss, worthlessness…we all do. We’ve all had our diagnosis. We all have bad days, months, and years. We’ve all had to survive things we wish we never [...]

  42. Vender Ouro  /  2012/02/08, 2:45 pm Reply

    I’m impressed, I need to say. Actually rarely do I encounter a blog that’s each educative and entertaining, and let me let you know, you’ve gotten hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the issue is one thing that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I’m very joyful that I stumbled throughout this in my seek for one thing relating to this.

  43. [...] out of jail time. I am not mocking mental illness. I take mental illness very seriously, being that I’ve got my own diagnosis to deal [...]

  44. Corey Feldman  /  2012/04/26, 5:34 pm Reply

    First, I am so sorry to hear about your childhood, makes me so angry any child should have to go through that. This was a very brave post. I had been in denial with my own battle with anxiety, mild depression, and ADHD. I started blogging about it recently, which was a bit scary. Partly because of the whole label thing, but you’re right, most people have been incredibly supportive.
    Corey Feldman recently posted..Egret makes a friend

  45. Deborah Cruz  /  2012/06/14, 6:36 am Reply

    On days when I feel like things are overwhelming and I’m all alone, I look at posts like these and realize that the internet is an amazing

  46. Deborah Cruz  /  2012/06/14, 6:36 am Reply

    place full of amazing people and I am blessed to have so much support and love in my life

  47. [...] for everybody, but seriously does life just want to see how far it can push us until we break? My sanity may truly be in question. Who does this? To be fair, the company is very remorseful but hard facts are that they have too [...]

  48. [...] good, the bad, and the ugly; the easy and the hard times. He’s loved me when I was at my best and loved me even harder when I was at my worst. When I am too weary to carry on, he picks me up and carries [...]

  49. Mama Pants  /  2012/10/02, 10:34 am Reply

    This post is so important. For you and for so many others. Thank you so much for putting this out there. For opening up your heart and allowing us to see inside. It’s posts like these that I hope people find when they are searching for help.
    Mama Pants recently posted..Sunday’s Pearl

    • Deborah Cruz  /  2012/10/02, 11:52 am Reply

      THank you so much for your kind words and the conversation this morning. XO

  50. [...] the hell does Miss Teen America have to do with anything? I’m not revealing another diagnosis, eating disorder, deep dark secret from my childhood or a life altering loss. In the last year, [...]

  51. [...] is how I process but these friendships with women around the globe, they are what keep me sane and believe me, that is no small task. But I know, not everything is what it appears on the [...]

  52. [...] most people would rather go without help than admit to having a mental illness. No one wants to go through life labeled as a diagnosis, which is what usually happens when someone is diagnosed with mental [...]

  53. [...] hear these statements made almost daily. For some, they may seem harmless but to those of us who suffer from these diagnoses, it’s far from funny.  It’s [...]

  54. Silver Linings Playbook | Smart Mom Style  /  2013/06/21, 2:02 pm Reply

    [...] also tackles how bipolar affects the relationships of those diagnosed with bipolar. I loved that this movie does all of that without being condescending or too over the [...]

  55. […] myself? Now, I wish everyone had a blog to help them bust out of their closets. Hard conversations: mental illness, child abuse, obesity, eating disorders, alcoholism, miscarriage and not being the kind of mom I […]

  56. […] him happy. We shared something in common, Mr. Williams and myself, aside from being from Chicago, a bipolar diagnosis. I don’t talk about it often because I am so much more than a diagnosis. It does not define […]

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