What Happened When I Joined 'Sarahah' as Someone With a Chronic Illness


When I saw the first Sarahah link on my timeline, I cringed. Not because I didn’t like the idea of being able to send people anonymous messages and feedback. It’s neat. I loved that I could give people positive comments without them knowing who it was. You could even help your friend realize how much they mean to everyone.

 

That being said, could you imagine the nasty remarks I might get if I made my own account? The fact is, anonymity makes bullying easy. I’ve seen so many of my friends get horrible messages and told myself I wouldn’t put myself in that situation. After all, between my depression, anxiety and issues related to lupus, I assumed most wouldn’t have anything nice to say. I can give you a list of comments I expected to receive:

You never have time for anyone.

You don’t leave the house much.

You’re cranky and depressed.

You need to shut up about healthcare.

You’ve let yourself go.

You cancel plans too much.

You’re too young to be this sick.

You’re too strict with your son.

I could keep going because I can only look at myself through my own eyes. I can only see my flaws. In a way, I could only see what my health issues have made me in recent years. After a week of seeing all the posts about it, I jumped on the bandwagon. Why? Who knows? I don’t regret it. While my link hasn’t been on my profile more than 24 hours and I don’t have many replies as I posted it a bit late, all of my replies made my month a lot better.

The messages ranged from “You got me to start reading! Thanks!” to “I think you’re pretty spiffy.” More than a few I knew instantly by the wording, but we hadn’t talked in years. It made me smile knowing distance happens, but they’re still there. Some made me cry, though not for malicious reasons.

messages received on sarahah

While Sarahah does allow for online bullying without difficulty, it made me more thankful for my friends. It showed me I have a group of fantastic people on my team. While I may beat myself up for problems I can’t control, the people I surround myself with see the best in me. They’ve helped me realize I’m too hard on myself. This bit of information was something I honestly needed, even if the “confessors” didn’t know what was going on in my life. I went in expecting the very worst, but I found that people can surprise you.

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