Being diagnosed with a mental illness affects each person differently, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a negative experience. Whether you’ve been diagnosed, are thinking about seeing a medical professional, or you are unsure about where to start and how to feel, these stories can be a reminder that being diagnosed can have a positive outcome.

1. “Getting diagnosed MDD and getting on meds with therapy is doing wonders for me, i wish I wasn’t so resistant to it all my life. More people should see if it works for them themselves and not shy away from hear-say horror stories.”

2.“I felt relief. My mental health issues took a lot of time and wellness from my life. Now I feel more capable to face my feelings and thoughts, now in treatment I have a chance to fight for a better life.”

3. “When I finally got the two diagnoses (bipolar and borderline), I was relieved. All the puzzle pieces fell into place, and for the first time I could make some sense of my life. I will probably be on meds and be in therapy for the rest of my life, but that’s ok. At least now I have a fighting chance.”

4. “I felt a range of things, but most of all, I felt validated. Especially when I saw the words written down. Like, PHEW, I haven’t imagined it, I’m not making this up, see? it’s there in black and white.

5. “Being diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder made me feel relief: relief in knowing that my disorder had a name and relief in knowing that I am not crazy. For four years, I believed I was going insane because my worries were taking me over more than I thought it would. Once I got diagnosed, it made me feel more like I was my normal self. I wasn’t going mad, and that’s all I cared about.”

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6. “Being diagnosed with ptsd,anxiety,mood disorder,bi polar never really gave me and help or relief. All it really did for me was let me know I am on a bad road and that I truly needed help. So I am in group therapy so I am not alone and that my road to recovery has started . It may take months,years or a life time but one day I hope to best it all and truly be happy again.I struggle everyday,but God won’t give me anything I can’t handle and learn from so I take it day to day baby step after baby step. I try to walk proud knowing that I am me and maybe I can be fixed.”

7. “My first diagnoses was when I was 14, depression. I believe it has shaped me so much, I have since then tumbled further and further into ‘the darkness’; many suicide attempts throughout my teenage years which lead me to smoking marijuana not long after I turned 18. I also ended up addicted to ice for a short time, I’m proud to say that in May I will be celebrating 12 months clean. my doctors changed my medication for about the 6th time recently, giving me something for the depression and anxiety, despite the therapy with the meds I still struggle daily; but with support from my loved ones and the dream that when I overcome this I want to be able to help others with this too.”

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8. “At first it helped me realize that there was something wrong. I was not bad for it, it just was. Later on it didn’t because I got to tackle the problems that led me to my depression. I was and still am so focused on improving my life that I don’t think about my diagnosis. I don’t think of myself as ill, I think of myself as a hard working woman. I know my diagnosis and it helps me recognize and evaluate my strength and weaknesses. Diagnosis is just the tool that should help you improve your life. If it doesn’t, maybe reconsider the therapist?”

9. “I wasn’t diagnosed until a little over two years ago. I didn’t actually meet my therapist until a year & 1/2 into therapy. DID, it was frightening and still is but I got the answer I spent years searching for, so that small piece of this was a relief.”

10. “Just diagnosed as ADHD at 51 & found a sense of relief as a lifetime of pieces began to make sense.”

11. “I was recently diagnosed with ADHD at 34. It is such a huge relief!! It explains everything! i am so much kinder to myself because now I know why I do (or fail to do) what I do. I used to beat myself up constantly & hold myself to impossibly high standards I’d never impose on anybody else. That lead to a life-long battle with depression and anxiety. Now I can forgive myself & try to move on with a strategy that just might work. My self esteem is rising and my anxiety and depression seem to be less like a constant presence in my life.”

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If you’ve been diagnosed, how has it affected your life? Let us know in the comments!

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