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  1. #1
    Otherside's Avatar
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    So why am not normal? I am normal. I just have a couple of issues, like everyone else

    Yes. I am normal. I would like to declare that, loud and clear for everyone to hear. I am one of these "normal people". I also suffer from anxiety and bipolar disorder as an added bonus. But why am I not normal? I am normal. I have two legs, two arms, two eyes and a nose. I'm a human being, just like you. And I have issues. So okay, they might be in the DSM. But everyone has issues. It's not just me. And even if you don't have a mental illness, I still wouldn't believe you if you told me you had never felt anxious, or never felt sad, or that everything had gone perfectly in your life.

    I don't see how saying "I'm normal" is trivializing an illness. How is that trivializing it? If you want to convince yourself that you have a serious life threatening disease and you want everyone to know how serious it is and feel sorry for you, then go for it. You'll become your own worst enemy. I know my illness is pretty serious...a few hospital visits, the fact that I've dropped out of college and that I'm not doing exams, a couple suicide attempts and a few lost friends has been enough to convince me of that. But why am I not normal??? I don't want to trivialize what I have, but I don't want to big my illness up and I don't want sympathy.

    See, there's serious physical illnesses out there. I could have a heart problem. Am I normal? Yes, probably. I could be diabetic. Still normal. I could have kidney failure and be requiring daily dialysis and I would still be a normal person. But I have bipolar disorder and anxiety and suddenly I'm not? Why? Why am I not normal? Somebody answer that one please, because it hurts when people (Even people with anxiety or other issues) just that people like us aren't normal and then give a reason for it. Especially the ones who have self-diagnosed and think telling people they have social anxiety "sounds too tame" so they're gonna tell them they have panic disorder. I got challenged over replying that panic disorder is NOT the same as social anxiety. I didn't say it was better or worse. Just that it's not the same. I have both PD and SA, co-morbid with each other, along with a GAD diagnosis. And why is it a fucking competition between which type of anxiety is worse???

    But that probably belongs in the frustration section, which this is not. So for the record, as recommended by an occupational therapist (Two, to be exact) I am NOT going to give myself a label of "Not normal". I would like to consider myself and anyone else with a mental illness, as a normal, human being with two legs, two eyes and a brain. This does not mean I am trivilizing your mental illness and or mine or that I don't realize how serious it is. I would just like to be considered normal, if at all possible, because in my opinion, I am. I just have some issues that I need to deal with.

    Edit-Hope that doesn't offend anyone. But please, stop telling me how serious and life threatening your social anxiety is. It's not. I'm 18, and as [BEEP] as life can be, I don't plan to end it all at 18. Also, just because I'm 18, does not mean my anxiety is any less than yours. And no, it is NOT normal teenage shit, so please don't patronize me with that.

    (This turned into a bit of a rant. But the point remains. I am normal. You are normal. We all are normal. And anxiety doesn't change that fact. )
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


  2. #2
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    I can relate so much to this.

    I also have bipolar and am considered not normal. I suppose it's better to not be, because normal people are boring. But it's still frustrating never being able to fit in.

  3. #3
    L's Avatar
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    Hun, the only person that can convince you that you are not normal is you. You give permission to people's words to effect you. I dont know what makes you think people see you as different, I hope it's no one from here becausee I'll kick their ass.

    But the start of your last paragraph has offended me a little.
    life---> <---me

  4. #4
    Coffee's Avatar
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    You know the bell curve?



    I feel like that can be applied to 'disorders' individually. Like anxiety is on a scale from 'normal' to 'abnormal' depending on how much it disrupts your life. I think it's okay for people to say that their anxiety is bad, life threatening and so on if it helps them to get their point across and if they really need help. I'd much rather someone tell me that their anxiety is life threatening than not tell me, because then I can't do anything about it, you know? Just my opinion.

    I agree with the rest of your post though, about not comparing disorders and everything. And I agree that if you feel like what you feel is normal, then that's awesome and it will hopefully aid your recovery.

  5. #5
    Otherside's Avatar
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    Okay, I apologize for the part of the post in which I made in which I said to not say it was life-threatening. I do know things like this can be pretty serious, I'm just in a bit of a bad mood today and I personally don't like people who try to make there anxiety seem worse by saying "Oh, but this sounds too tame, let's call it this instead..." or "I can't better because of..." or "I'm not even going to try because it's never going to get better...". I didn't mean to offend anyone, and as much as I know that anxiety is serious, I just don't like people saying they suffer from "Panic disorder" because it sounds more serious than social anxiety or just saying you have anxiety. To be honest, I don't think it's any worse or any better. It's just anxiety in a different form.

    But I don't like people who don't have a diagnosis telling me that they have a mental illness that I have, when they don't know much about it.That, in my opinion, is trilizing it. Panic disorder is horrible. General Anxiety is pretty horrible and social anxiety is horrible too. I probbaly don't have all three. All three were given to me by different people. I relate more to panic disorder than GAD. Panic attacks are what triggers the anxiety. Not everyone with anxiety has panic attacks, and having panic attacks doesn't always mean you have panic disorder. However, some people seem to believe that panic disorder is another word for social phobia or anxiety. Saying you suffer from Social Anxiety can get you a few "Really???" Looks from people, but heck, please don't use the name of another mental illness to big your disorder up and make it sound serious.

    So I didn't mean to offend anyone. I'm sorry if I did.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


  6. #6
    Coffee's Avatar
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    ^ I agree with you here.

  7. #7
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    Normal is relative.

  8. #8
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    I always wanted to be "normal." I had a picture of what normal was. Perfect marriage, perfect kids, perfect income, perfect friends. Pretty much the Brady Bunch, but without Jan being mad at Marcia...... "Marcia! Marcia! Marcia!"

    I would strive for normal. I wanted to fit in to everybody's view of normal. If they believed normalcy was plastering a smile on my face, I would do that.
    If they thought a normal human being was grateful, or bold, or happy, or sad.............I would do that also.
    My definition of normal was "how can I please those around me?"

    One day I thought about it.
    How can everybody's view of normalcy be so different?

    It was impossible to be normal because everyone disagreed. Shrinks defined normal as talking about feelings. Hospitals defined it as being passive rather than aggressive. My cats defined it as staying home and letting them sit on me while they took a bath.

    So I gave up my quest to be "normal" by everyone else's definition.

    Then I asked myself this question............... what goal to I want to achieve?

    I came up with these answers:

    I want to be less depressed and anxious
    I want to ok with who I am
    I want to feel safe
    I want be one human with connected feelings and thoughts
    I want to be ok with being alone and ok with choosing to be around people sometimes
    I want to wake up in the morning and say "I can do this"

    So now I gauge if I am "normal" by how close I come to my goals each day

    Does that make sense?
    The Hokey Pokey IS what it's all about

  9. #9
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    It does make sense.

    However, people aren't perfect. I haven't met the kind of girl that A.) I would want to marry, and B.) I would be enough in love with to marry, and C.) I would feel safe being a mother to my kids.

    Even marriages have flaws. That's why there is divorce. People aren't like The Brady Bunch, and they can't pretend to be. It just isn't normal to be normal.

  10. #10
    compulsive's Avatar
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    Any mental or physical disease / disorder whatever can be life threatening. Anxiety disorders do cause suicides. Fact. So do many physical illnesses (also deaths not by choice).

    No I don't consider myself normal in any aspect whatsoever, so I don't ever call myself normal and probably never will. I dont get along with people and probably never will.Just want to not have anxiety and have a decent life. Dont care about the rest.

    Whether you think you are normal or not is up to you.

  11. #11
    Antidote's Avatar Rude & Shouty
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    I don't really know how to reflect on this. I do want to be normal in some aspects but in other aspects of life I've never desired normalcy. For example I never wanted to have a crazy social life, be popular, get married, have a big wedding, work a boring 9-5 job etc. None of those things interested me. I did want to be accepted by my peers and be mentally/physically healthy though. But I'm not so for that reason I do consider myself abnormal since I deviate from the norm. I don't like it, but I can't deny it.

    I don't see diabetics and those with cardiac problems as normal when it comes to physical health. The way they diagnose many illnesses is by seeing how far one deviates from a normal range, like blood sugar levels in the case of a diabetic. But I think you meant more are they mentally normal? Yes usually they are. The same principles can be applied to mental illness except the 'normal' ranges are less precise because you have to take the context (sociocultural norms) into account.

    I think maybe what bothers you is the assumption that deviating from the norm is always bad. It's not, sometimes the norm is unhealthy and deviating from it is a good thing. Sometimes it just means you're different / even exceptional. If you are deviating from the norm but are happy and healthy and not harming anyone around you then you can't be deemed as ill in anyway. Sometimes what's ill/abnormal in one environment is healthy/normal in another environment, so sometimes you have to change your environment rather than yourself to be 'normal'.

  12. #12
    Otherside's Avatar
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    Quote compulsive View Post
    Any mental or physical disease / disorder whatever can be life threatening. Anxiety disorders do cause suicides. Fact. So do many physical illnesses (also deaths not by choice).
    Look, I've apologized for saying that, and I didn't mean to cause offence. I was in a bit of a bad mood when I posted this.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


  13. #13
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    I think maybe people act like it makes you "not normal" because they don't know how to act. They maybe don't know what it is like, so for them it would be abnormal. I think many people compare what is/is not normal to themself. It's just a lack of understanding. The other day, I was talking to one of my friends and somehow it got brought up that I used to have panic attacks almost every day, and multiple times a day. She just chuckled and said "well, that's about enough to get you locked in a hospital.". And yes, if it had been probably anyone else say that to me, I probably would have been offended, but it was just a lack of understanding. I just laughed at her. Nothing was weird afterwards, and nobody was mad. Its just a lack of understanding, and when it comes to people close to us, we also need to understand that they DONT understand. It is something serious, but what good does it do to get worked up about it? I honestly take my anxiety lightly. If I don't, it just makes it worse anyways.

  14. #14
    compulsive's Avatar
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    Quote Otherside View Post
    Look, I've apologized for saying that, and I didn't mean to cause offence. I was in a bit of a bad mood when I posted this.
    ok all good.

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