Child Abuse and Mental Health Survivors Information - Issue #90
You are Enough, but What is Enough?
Thank you for reading the Child Abuse and Mental Health Survivors newsletter. Each week I share new blog posts and other resources that aim to help survivors of childhood abuse and those who are struggling with mental health issues feel less alone as we discuss the issues surrounding our issues. If you’ve tried to follow the resources I share on social media and find that the algorithm has decided for you to not show you the things we post, this is the best way to get caught up each week.
For more information about me and why this newsletter exists visit the website - Child Abuse Survivor.
Yesterday as we drove past a digital billboard the message flashed across in large letters:
"You are enough"
Then the billboard flipped to the next message
"$6.99 Domino's Deal"
And I said to my wife "damn I really thought being enough would be worth more than Domino's."
You are Enough. Funny story about the billboard aside, that phrase is a popular one in mental health spaces. Have you ever asked yourself what it means to be “enough” though? I suspect your definition of enough might be different than mine. I suspect if I asked a 100 people, there might easily be more than 50 different definitions.
When I stop to consider what it means to me, I come back to something I’ve tried to remind myself about - intrinsic value. As in, I am a human being and I deserve certain things. I don’t have to do anything extra to deserve them. Things like rest, eating a meal, free time, etc.
For me, “you are enough” translates to an understanding that my life has value simply because I exist. That there are no further requirements.
And, since my life has value, I can take care of that life for no further reason.
So can you.
How would you define being enough?
New From the Blogs
Instead of simply scrolling social media mindlessly taking in whatever the algorithms decide to show us, let's figure out how to have more good news show up in our feeds. It's not that we are ignoring the bad stuff that is going on in the world, or creating toxic positivity, but if we are to get through this life together, we need more stories that will balance out that negativity. Without that balance, I fear we are all headed for a very bleak outlook on the world and a bleak future to go along with it.
Sharing - Everybody Deserves Empathy
Mostly though, it's just luck. Just as I've mentioned many times that I was privileged and lucky enough to be able to get help to learn how to deal with my trauma, I was also lucky enough to have only been homeless for a little while, and to have not had a violent or disruptive outburst that led to my being imprisoned or killed.
That luck doesn't make me more worthy of empathy. It was just luck.
Linked - For Your Mental Health, Vacation is Not Always the Right Answer
If you feel burned out a break can help. If you're feeling stressed some exercise or yoga can help too. But if that's all the workplace can offer, it's not going to solve the problem. Taking a long weekend only to return to a job that will now require you to do your normal 45-50 hours of work in 3 days instead of 5 is not a fix. Working all weekend so you can take a three-day weekend next week, is not a sustainable solution.
Linked - I’m here, I’m queer and I have depression – but workplace support makes all the difference
The reality is that the labor force is diverse, and your employees are as well. There are also going to be a wide range of life issues that they are dealing with. Mental health is one of them, and based on the statistics, someone who works for you is dealing with some form of anxiety, depression or some other issue. Wouldn't it be great, and help employee retention, if they were supported at work?
Shared From Elsewhere
Photography is one of my favorite hobbies. (You can see some of my photos here.) As such, I’m always interested in the connection between my hobby and mental health. Seeing it come up a few times in recent week made me want to share some of those posts:
21 Photographs Of The Spring Season To Bring Some Cheer And Inspiration
We’ve seen a lot of people talking about social anxiety being on the rise. Maybe these tips will help? - How to overcome social anxiety
Or maybe think about loneliness:
“In the latest RSA Short, US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy explains how we can get better at spotting the signs of loneliness in people around us, and the simple steps we can all take to build a more connected society, and a more connected life.”
Writing can also help with mental health issues - The Benefits of Journaling: How Writing Can Improve Your Mental Health
Working on Academia can bring about it’s own mental health strains. Priscilla shares her own story - Mental Health in Academia – My own case study.
From the Archives
Healing is a long journey. It’s easy to see what you think is the end result of healing, whatever that looks like for you, and measure yourself by the fact that you aren’t there yet. I’d disagree with that. Not that you shouldn’t have an eye on the prize, so to speak, but you need to see the details, and you need to enjoy the details.
Another Good Reason to Talk About Child Abuse
I realized, this was not just some magic radar that was bringing me to other survivors. I am, literally, surrounded by other survivors, and so are you. We just don’t talk about it, so we don’t even realize how many survivors are in our midst every day. We stay silent, and hide our “secret”, and miss out on the benefits of seeing other survivors.
How many survivors do you know? How many people around you are survivors but have never told anyone?
Thanks for reading. If you find this newsletter informative and helpful to you, spread the word. That’s the best way you can say thank you for the effort I put in each week.