Mental Illness can Make Your Relationships Suffer
When you have a mental illness, it is easy to get stuck inside your head, and stop thinking about other people's feelings. You may do or say things that are harmful or insensitive. You may blame your partner or your family for feeling as you do, or for not helping you enough.
Remember, if you are feeling badly, don't take it out on the people around you. They are your support system, and may be open to helping you with your mental health struggles if you let them.
Try not to take everything that is said to you too personally. I have a tendency of doing this, and if someone in my life says something negative to me, I will ruminate on it for weeks or even months. I let the comments get blown out of proportion, and constantly obsess over them.
You may also try to push people away, because you are afraid that they are eventually going to leave you, so you try to leave them instead. Feelings blur in your mind, and you don't know if anyone really loves you. This is a trick that anxiety and depression can play on you. It erodes your trust and damages your relationships.
It is difficult to see things objectively when you have a mental illness, because there are so many cognitive distortions that you face on a daily basis. Your mind is constantly playing tricks on you.
According to Healthline,
Cognitive distortions involve negative thinking patterns that aren’t based on fact or reality.
When you have a mental illness, it is easy to suffer from cognitive distortions in your life and in your relationships. These negative thoughts in your head circle around and around, and it is hard to get them out. Sometimes it feels like you are fighting a losing battle with your own thoughts.
If your have cognitive distortions that are effecting your relationships, it can be easy to push away the people that you love the most. Sometimes, with a mental illness, we constantly obsess and worry about the state of our relationships. This can be damaging to both ourselves and other people.
According to Diversus Health,
“Sometimes our mental health symptoms can make us feel lethargic, impact our ability to express empathy, or cause feelings of anxiety and isolation. Sometimes these symptoms can cause codependency or even resentment of your partner.”
When you are struggling with resentment or negative feelings in your relationship, it is important to try to talk things through. However, you may feel stuck or not know what to say. If this is the case, you may want to consider couples therapy in addition to your individual therapy.
Going to couples therapy can help you learn to talk to your partner in a more objective way, instead of letting your mental health issues and rumination get in the way. You can learn to use active listening to really hear what your partner is saying to you.
Often, the stories that we have going on in our minds about our relationships are different than what is actually happening. In these instances, it is important to try to take a step back and see if you can look at things differently.
When you have a mental illness, it can be difficult to try to take on someone else's perspective, or to understand what they are thinking or feeling. When you focus excessively on your own feelings, you may be neglecting the feelings of the other person, even if you are constantly thinking about them.
The image we have in our heads about another person may be different than the reality. With a mental illness, it can be hard to differentiate our thoughts and feelings from the reality of the situation. We can blow chance comments out of proportion easily.
Sometimes we have a tendency to upset our partner or other family members with emotional outbursts due to mental health symptoms. If this has happened, it is important to apologize and work to repair trust in the relationship. Explain your feelings, but take time to listen too.
Listening to others, and taking time to understand their perspectives is an important way to work on fixing a relationship. Often, when we really take time to listen, it can be reassuring for us as well.