It is no secret that hundreds of thousands even millions of women neglect their mental health; I know, I was one of them. As a child, again like many women, I experienced a lot of hurt and pain, all from exposure of domestic violence in the home, drugs, and even death. Being raised by a single parent, it was devastating watching her work hard to support her family. I appreciated it then, but more so even now because I understand as an adult and then losing that parent to sudden death was even more traumatic. What about the women who have similar experiences or have it even worse and instead of talking to someone, they may have turned to other forms of substance abuse?
Research shows that women have silenced their voices when it comes to battling everyday life. Often we are so busy and consumed in what we are doing that we forget who we are in the midst of things. For example, after my mom passed, I used my education and my job as a way to escape the real emotions, not realizing that emotion would soon catch up to me. Toxic relationships were forming and I paid no mind to them because I couldn't see what was happening until I had my first mental breakdown at the age of 28. Amid extensive therapy, I realized the hurt that I was causing myself and learned the difficulty of removing myself from them. I lost friends, I lost my job, and I was even “kicked” out of school because of my depression and anxiety. I couldn't function and I was even suicidal. Now a year later, here I am rebuilding myself and creating a story to share with others.
After reviewing research and based on my personal experiences, there is healing in personal stories. I have learned that when you share your story, there can be a sense of hope for someone who is going through something you already have; it gives you the opportunity to show them that it can be done. No one is perfect and authenticity, as well as acceptance, are important in the healing process. For some, it may take one time to understand life’s reality check and for others, it may take two or three, like me. Some may be ashamed or embarrassed by their journey. But the truth of the matter is that practice makes perfect.
For me, its battled wounds that matter the most, and in that is where a woman finds her confidence. When a woman has the opportunity to share her story and how she has overcome, that is where you see her power. During those days where we feel challenged and the world feels like its crumbling down and nothing is going right, that is when she can remind herself she's beautiful, strong, and powerful because shes overcome it before what is it to say she can’t do it again. She has a purpose.
When it comes to dealing with something new, how do we learn, traditionally we learn from an instructor of some sort right, we learn from someone who is knowledgeable of the topic, same goes for mental health. We learn from individuals who are trained to educate others on how to cope with depression, anxiety, and other diagnoses. She Has Purpose is an online community that will do just that. In our group, there are tons of articles for women that enlighten us on various things we can do to improve our mental health. In addition, in the near future, our group will stand as an education platform where Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical behavior therapy to help educate and guide women during their journey with their mental health disorder. Encouraging women one day at a time to embrace who they are through patience, authenticity, and self-power.