A few days ago, when I wrote the post, Depression Behavior: Personal Hygiene, I was gratified to get such positive comments. And it made me realize how little positive enforcement I received from five different psychiatrists and some of my relatives and friends during a decade of severe depressive episodes.
I have always prided myself on the self-discipline I exercised, and the hard work it took to try and achieve a high level of "normalcy" for my husband and son during these depressive episodes. In addition, I worked so hard to achieve wellness, that even though I wasn't initially successful, I felt I should have received positive reinforcement for my efforts.
Instead, I felt abandoned by so many people--a number of whom had previously been near and dear to me. They made it quite clear that they considered me a failure because I couldn't "cure" myself. And others tried to take advantage of my illness for reasons only they can understand.
Yet, despite their negativity and bad behavior, I tried my very best to maintain my self-esteem, which has always been high. Despite healers who didn't heal, charlatans who pretended they could help me, but couldn't, and friends and relatives who tired of my disappearance from sight for months on end or others who felt I was self-absorbed because it took all of my energy just to stay alive, I survived, and now flourish.
Yet, a part of me is still angry and disappointed for the way I was treated for so long. So, you can't imagine how good it felt to receive praise from my fellow bloggers. I would like to thank Naturalgal, KJ, Jazz, PJ, Catatonic Kid, and Nancie for commenting on this post. Every time I reread what you wrote, I smile!