Is it really? I still believe it is difficult to speak out about mental illness. It's not strangers or friends I fear, it is mostly family and colleagues.
I feel regret about my last but one job, as I feel they made too many concessions for me after I spoke about my problems. They cared but would not let me be myself, make mistakes and work through the errors for myself. There was always some fear on their part that I would blame them for my illness because of the amount of stress I was under due to poor management. My boss thought I had a crush on him (maybe my fault through manic behaviour) and talking to these people I had to keep in my life and who had control over me made me feel very vulnerable.
My next job had absolutely no stress management policies and several others have left since I handed in my resignation. I was on minimum holiday and sick pay and the work load was unbearable. After my previous job I felt no desire to inform my colleagues of my mental health although I did confide in some friends I made at work.
My current job has excellent stress management policies and I hope this should be enough. As I settle in and feel more comfortable I may indeed talk more.
As for my immediate family, it is just too difficult at the moment. Although they know about my period in hospital they showed little understanding and still come with comments such as;
They have no concept about how much these things hurt and I become too distressed to defend myself so I just end up changing the subject and then I'm told I'm rude. Their comments just hurt too much.
With those people a little more distant and friends with whom I have mutual respect, I like to talk. They respect me and my opinions and beliefs and many show empathy which I really appreciate and this helps me feel accepted. I will continue to post to my blog where I hope I can do my part to change the stigma associated with mental health. At this time, I cannot talk to family and colleagues.