While social media has been in the news for the negative ways it impacts mental health, many people who are newly diagnosed with a mental illness are turning to social media to connect with people who share the same diagnosis. For some, finally having a name for their symptoms or receiving a diagnosis after years of poor mental health brings relief. For others it brings an uncertainty about the future, about treatment options, and concern about talking to friends and loved ones. Don't let your mental issues hold you back. Call Legacy Freedom to speak with a counselor in Columbus, OH that cares!
On Twitter, Rachel Griffin, a mental health advocate, created a hashtag aimed at those who are newly diagnosed with mental illness. The creation of the #ifjustdiagnosed hashtag was inspired by Rachel's desire to connect people who have been newly diagnosed with a mental illness to messages of support and hope across the platform. Griffin is quick to note that a diagnosis doesn't mean that you aren't yourself anymore. Instead, she hopes that those who have been recently diagnosed with a mental illness will use her hashtag to find supportive messages that can help them during their hard days. The tweets range from sentiments that people wish they would have heard when they were newly diagnosed to general pieces of advice for those who live with mental illness.
For those who have been newly diagnosed, access to online support groups can help them face their diagnosis with a bit of anonymity. The process of accepting a mental health diagnosis can be extremely emotional and leave the person feeling a combination of emotions that can be difficult to describe or explain. Many people experience a combination of:
- Shock or Denial: Mental health problems happen to other people, this can't be happening to me.
- Confusion: I don't understand what this means for me. I need more information. No one is giving me the answers I need. How I see the problem doesn't match my diagnosis.
- Anger: Why is this happening to me?
- Loss of Hope or Control: I don't know how I will ever overcome this. I have no control over my life anymore. What do I do now?
- Shame: I am broken. I am flawed.
- Fear: I don't understand my diagnosis and I'm not sure anyone else will either.
- Guilt: I brought this on myself, it's my fault that I'm like this.
- Hope: Finally, I have an answer for what all the signs and symptoms mean.
- Relief: I have a name for what I have been experiencing. I'm not making it all up, it is a real condition.
- Grief: I feel like my life will never be the same and I am no longer the person I once was.
These difficult thoughts often add to the confusion and intense feelings that newly diagnosed people experience. Being able to connect with others who have a similar diagnosis can help put their condition in perspective and remove some of the fear and stigma surrounding a new mental health diagnosis. These groups offer suggestions for how to live with your diagnosis in daily life, what the diagnosis means for your relationships, your employment, and social situations. For some, simply knowing that they are not alone is comforting. Being able to interact with others who are experiencing the same issues is empowering and motivating.
An Experienced Counselor in Columbus, OH
If you are struggling with an undiagnosed mental illness, Legacy Freedom of Columbus can help. Thousands of clients have found relief with our holistic approach to mental health care. Call or click to begin your healing journey by speaking with a qualified counselor in Columbus, OH today! Your symptoms have a name, let us help you find it.
Join us next time as we explore the power of online support groups.