Top 10 Reasons Mental Health Suffers at Christmas
or, why I should've gone to Hawaii
- The amount of time I spend watching films that feature Colin Firth and/or Sandra Bullock to offset the moodiness and irritability ignited by the festive season - whilst paying for wholly unnecessary items on my Ebay account.
- The pressure to invest in one day of no-regrets, wholehearted good cheer and joy. It doesn't come naturally to those of us who spend most of the year dealing with the symptoms of anxiety and depression.I love Christmas. I just don't buy into the myth that it's the one perfect day of the year. Jesus got stuck in a manger. In all likelihood, I'll get stuck in an airport lounge wondering how far I can stretch the olive in an extra dry martini.
- The number of magazines, blogs, and media outlets seemingly dedicated to my best intentions except for the parts where they tell me how my pants are going to explode, how alcohol will kill me and if not that then the combination of nervous tension, impossibly tiny canapes, and things still left on my to-do list.
- The part where I try not to look like I care about any of it, fail miserably and curl up in a corner to watch reruns and Christmas Specials.
Don't say I didn't warn you if I get in a fight with the Christmas tree and end up sobbing in the bathroom, making desperate calls to my best friend in Australia since:
A. True love has not rescued me and; B. Santa hasn't brought gifts so much as waves of anxiety wrapped in guilt and mild paranoia.
- An inability to motivate myself sufficiently to care whether life is like a box of chocolates, having found myself rather busy living it.
- Anticipatory anxiety attacks at the mere mention of 2011 - And getting up every day, reminding myself that I'm not alone in all this. That helps, but it's also something of a struggle.A push-me, pull-me kind of exercise in making it through the final sprint towards a hopefully happier New Year: Hope. That's all. And it isn't easy to accept when you're dealing with anxiety.
- Promises broken. Too many thoughts unspoken: Along with the generosity of the season there's a sense of loss and depression. Of needing to leave behind all the 'Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda' and get on with making a life.
I'm not entirely sure what I want that to look like but I know it can't be conquered by fairy lights and baked goods.
- Feeling my blood pressure rise every time someone mentions the need for me to be social. Again.
- A weird Pavlovian reaction to the sound of Christmas tunes that makes me teary, angry and nostalgic; It also makes me want to spend the next 2 weeks hiding under the card table muttering about cats, and drinking heavily.
- A tendency to get all wrapped up in the shiny, pretty things - procrastinate about said shiny, pretty things - then feel trapped.
What will the new year bring?
- A few more pounds?
- A rebound panic attack?
- A brief spell of seasonal affective disorder now that I'm living in at a longitude where grey is the color of midday?
All of the above? Let's throw our hopes in together and pray we all get through it. And we will.
White, K. (2010, December 21). Top 10 Reasons Mental Health Suffers at Christmas, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2023, December 7 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/treatinganxiety/2010/12/top-10-reasons-mental-health-suffers-at-christmas
Author: Kate White
you put my life and thoughts into words I'm not even capable of coming with with right now!
Nicely written especially like 'Santa hasn’t brought gifts so much as waves of anxiety wrapped in guilt and mild paranoia.'
Thank you, Philippa!
I'm having a little moment here that you read this. :) Thusly, I shall pimp your text for you:
Readers, read -and by that I mean preferably buy- Couch Fiction. It's a graphic novel about psychotherapy. I mean, c'mon. That's just fun.
Oh honey!! *hugs and more hugs*
Some day we'll have that huge-pots-of-tea-all-night conversation, but until we're both in the same time and space again... remember that you are loved and supported by both your friends and the entire frickin' universe!
It's not that bad for me, the Christmas thing. Except if I stop to pay too much dang attention to it, you know? Grrrrr.
Fairy light are awesome but I reckon they should be disassociated with Xmas because they are for all-year-long use as far as I'm concerned.
And the rest... meh.
P.S. Don't watch "Love, Actually" too many times in case you feel the sudden urge to remove your eyeballs from your head! xo
Svast - having recently discovered how much there is to enjoy about fairy lights, i am inclined to agree.
meanwhile, damn the space-time continuum for keeping us apart (there's a Chart love song in there, i can feel it) and full speed ahead!