I Can Be “Jolly” Even with a Mental Illness

Dear Maya,

You might have noticed that I, sometimes, like to “brag” about how bad my day is going. I use the word “brag” because I sometimes feel like an entitled brat because I have a mental illness. Entitled to “deserve better”, entitled to “lesser effort” and “easier opportunities”.

As you might also know, it can be entertaining to listen to my animated rant. Add in a dash of vulnerable humour and it’s the magic potion to get the sympathy of well-wishers (although it’s empathy I value the most when I’m really down).

Some of the best entertainers in my friends’ circle – the people who crack the wittiest of jokes – are the same people who go back home to pop their depression pills. It’s almost impossible to judge a person’s internal struggles by their outward appearance.

I too can be jolly, even with a mental illness.

It’s this humour which makes speaking about mental health more liberating to me. By laughing at my anxiety, I’m able to lessen the strength it bears on me. By poking fun at my seizures, I give it one less chance to poke back at me. I’ve made a few more people smile by pointing at my sometimes-awkward body language. By writing this blog post, I’ve opened myself up to a larger support community.

More often than not, it’s the route I take to decipher who I can be friends with, and who might not judge me very well. It’s a risk I take; because being accepted for who I am – mental illness and all- is far more rewarding than being loved for someone I’m genuinely not.






4 thoughts on “I Can Be “Jolly” Even with a Mental Illness

  1. I applaud you for speaking out about what it’s like to live with mental illness. So much negative stigma surrounds it, and because of it society has no real grasp on what it really is/means.

    I too decided to utilize my experience in life dealing with depression and PTSD, as well as my journey as a martial artist, to write self-help and/or inspirational articles. It is my hope that my blog will help or touch someone in a positive way. If you’d like to, have a look and if you like or find inspiration in what I write, feel free to comment and/or follow. ☺️ ❤️


    • Hi Sarah,
      Thank you for the kind words.
      As I’m writing more and discovering so many people choosing to speak up about their own mental health, it occurs to me that there is so much potential in this collective voice.
      We must channelize it.
      I would make me very happy if you would like to be a guest author on Dear Maya.
      Let me know below.
      Thank you for taking the time out to read!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think its amazing how open you are about these things. We all suffer in one way or another. In my experience even when your in the lows, being able to laugh a little goes a long way. Keep up the great writing 🙂


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