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10 Things That Happen on Thanksgiving When You Live With a Mental Illness

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Hello Thanksgiving, we meet again. It’s been awhile since we’ve loaded up on mashed potatoes and forgotten once again the process of cooking a turkey. But we always look forward to counting our blessings and realizing how truly #blessed we are.

Many of us are especially grateful to celebrate another year of living with a mental illness! The fight may not be over yet for those of us living with our various diseases, but we keep pushing through. If you’ve been living with a mental illness, you’ll probably experience one or more of these various situations over the Thanksgiving week.

1. You realize you’re going to have to socially interact with people for several hours.

And Grandma’s place doesn’t have wifi

2. And on top of that, your mom’s blabbed to everyone about your recent diagnosis. 

Gee, thanks, Sharon.

3. Your relatives who are less comfortable with mental illness try (poorly) to avoid any conversation that could make you feel bad.


4. But you’re ready to share your story and educate everyone!

Give them time. Not everyone has the same experiences.

5. So then you try to explain your experiences…

6. …and your cousin Sophie tries to tell you she too was “totally depressed” after Zayn left One Direction.

Tell me more about how aromatherapy just changed your life…

7. But they’re still family so you have to hope they’ll get the picture eventually.


8. Then you have to take a break to meditate in your “happy place” when the stress piles up.

Give me like five minutes, OK?

9. Preparing yourself to put your recovery to the ultimate test during the Thanksgiving feast.

You’ve got this.

10. And in the end you realize you’re actually getting healthier!


Happy Thanksgiving!


Originally published: November 25, 2015
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