All too often, the media sensationalizes celebrities’ struggles, splashing images of the wreckage that can accompany these disorders across social and print media, and there is not enough out there about celebrities who proactively seek help.
When to Ask for Help
It can be difficult to acknowledge to ourselves that we need help and support, let alone know when, who, or even how to ask for it. There is often a notion that we need to know exactly what is wrong or why we aren’t feeling well, either mentally or physically, before seeking professional assistance.
In reality, however, we don’t need to know anything beyond the fact that things don’t feel right – that our internal landscape is off-kilter, or that we aren’t living a full, whole, and balanced life for any reason.
It’s easy to fall into a comparison trap (“I don’t have it that bad”), or a ‘should’ mentality (“I shouldn’t feel this way“) as Kit Harington expressed when he said, “I felt I had to feel that I was the most fortunate person in the world when actually, I felt very vulnerable.”
Even when things around us appear to be going smoothly; when all the exterior trappings of life are in place – a loving family, a good job, lack of financial stress – it doesn’t mean we don’t struggle and we don’t need help.
It’s important not to lose ourselves in the diagnostics of what isn’t right rather than the fact that we need additional support.
This is particularly true of substance use disorder. There is a wide-spread unspoken belief that in order to seek professional assistance we need to self-diagnose as an alcoholic or addict, but this misguided idea keeps far too many people from proactively seeking help.
With substance use, the most important thing is that alcohol and/or drugs are impacting a person’s mental, physical, emotional, and/or spiritual wellbeing, not whether or not they meet the criteria for any specific diagnosis.