This time of year is supposed to be about being merry and enjoying parties and drinks with friends and family, however, it can be stressful for mental health sufferers.
Many people find that being surrounded by too many people can feel lonely and overwhelming. I hate Christmas shopping because I rush around shops trying to buy things and I get annoyed when I can’t find what I want and often just pick up something random off the shelves. I also hate queuing because it makes me panicky. By queuing I mean more than one other person at the till. I don’t have the patience for this. I need to get into a place, get what I want and get out before I explode.
Lucky for me, I started my Christmas shopping online back in October, and I had only brought a few things from one shop a few weeks ago. At least I don’t have the whole Christmas panic buy, and I don’t have a lot of people to buy for.
I don’t have friends to meet up with or Christmas parties to go to either because I work for myself and the only people I see are my family and the staff at the leisure centre I go to almost every day. I don’t miss the parties because I used to panic about what to wear and I would look too fat in a dress. I also hate big parties (depending on what mood I’m in). I could be singing and dancing on chairs, or I would try to hide from everyone at the bar.
As I work for myself, my brain is always ticking, and if I miss even one day of exercise, I go crazy thinking I’m going to gain weight.
A poll by the Samaritans shows that “Nearly half of people questioned in a poll for Samaritans said they hide their real feelings at Christmas to keep other people happy. The poll also showed that many more women feel they have to put on a brave face than men.”
This year there are mental health helplines open on Christmas Day, so if you or someone you know is struggling let them know that the Samaritans and SANE are open every day. You could end up saving someone’s life.
The best Christmas gift for mental health sufferers is to let them know that you are there for them no matter what.