Love isn’t Real: Mental Health and Relationships

Kenzie Larsen, Writer

Since childhood, we are familiar with the word love. As we get older, connections with people are created that could last a lifetime: that is unless something gets in the way. The truth is, when someone is faced with a mental illness such as anxiety or depression, love becomes harder to find on the surface. Isolating yourself from people who could help, but don’t want to hurt. It’s important to remember that there is always a safe place to go.

When people are shut out by the stigma that surrounds mental illness they tend to lose a grasp on what can actually help them. Having people to love and having relationships when you’re struggling with mental health is similar to a life jacket on a sinking boat. You’re searching for something to save you but when you panic it becomes harder to think clearly.

Mental health at Tahoma is an issue that is handed to us through curriculum freshman year in health class. Life skills such as getting help for yourself or others is talked about in uncomfortable conversations that make class more anxiety-inducing. A freshman at Tahoma High School said, “I wanted to get out of class… sharing very personal experiences with suicide isn’t starting up the correct conversation.” When a school focuses on suicide prevention, it mostly relates to how it starts and barely why it happens. The important thing that is missed, when you shut out everyone important to you, you lose sight that there is any chance of recovery. Relationships may become harder to maintain because there’s no safety pamphlet showing a step by step guide telling us to help ourselves first, then help others.

Getting professional help can be effective no matter what you are facing with your mental health. “When you’re on the outside, watching someone struggle, it’s important to remember how scary it can be” claims one of our school counselors, Lori Lewis. We had a conversation about losing your connections with people will take time to recover it fully. The school counselors are there to listen and give their input, however, it may be better to see someone routinely that can be dedicated to helping you over time.

When you’re watching your friend lose relationships, or when you’re personally losing love for the people closest to you, it can be a heartbreaking and emotional thing to go through. It’s important to remember that while it may feel like the right thing to walk away from everyone, having someone there to listen or understand could help you more than you could ever help yourself.