The Fears and the Facts

facing fearsI’ve been chatting with some folks about their biggest struggles when it comes to mental health.

Here’s what they said:

when you can’t sleep but you can’t be awake, you can’t be home but not with friends either.

thinking I should sort it myself because that’s what other people do.

having to ask for help when it goes completely against your nature.

when I’m stressed, when other people are hurting and I can’t make it better

feeling like I have to show people around me who God is. But worrying that by seeing me they get the wrong impression of Christians.

the unpredictability of depression

I don’t know how to listen to my body any more and it feels like it’s not mine

when I can’t get something right

when I’m given too much freedom and trust which I can’t handle and I need to clean myself up and start over, in order to be good enough

never being ‘sick enough’ to feel worthy of getting better and therefore hurting the people who love me by always staying sick

being totally misunderstood but not being able to speak what’s true

I’m ashamed that I’m not normal

the lies that started with food and spread to every area

I have to be perfect but I can’t

not knowing when I need to sort myself out and when to get medical help

maybe God forgives me but I can’t forgive myself

feeling the same things and making the same mistakes but I don’t know how to stop it

it’s hard to see the difference between me and the illness

feeling obliged to exercise/count things/wash

being isolated and trapped in my own stupid head

shame and self-disgust

related behaviours eg; stealing food from flatmates, drinking too much

I worry I have no direction and purpose

frustration: change needs to come from me, but how do I do it?

worrying I’m a fraud

the guilt of hurting people I love

feeling weird and like a freak

always being frightened

worrying that it’s only me who feels like this.


Many of these struggles are mine. Maybe they’re yours too. But our struggles are not who we are.


I don’t believe that there’s a line between ‘normal’ and ‘struggling’.

I don’t believe in any sickness or sadness or shame that can keep us in the dark.


I believe in a God who works through, and not despite our brokenness.

and a church that embraces the broken and the lost.

I believe in hope, even when I don’t feel it

I believe in the future, even when I can’t see it.

Most of all,

I believe in a Saviour who comes for those who can’t save themselves.

6 thoughts on “The Fears and the Facts

  1. I feel like who I am got lost so long ago that I have no idea who she was to find her again. All I do know is the struggle of each hour and that feels very real. I long to believe as you do…

  2. Laura: I know the struggles are very painful and very real. But Jesus comes for those like us who are lost (Luke 19:10) and He promises that He will never turn away anyone who comes to Him (John 6:37). What you’re doing: reading the gospels and asking Him to show himself to you, is exactly right. But like all relationships, it takes time. I’ve emailed. x

  3. Thank you for this article. Depression can be isolating so reading things I would have said reminds me there are others. I feel blessed to know Jesus and I pray for the ones who do not have faith (yet). It scares me to think there are some who are doing this on their own. I wouldn’t be alive if I hadn’t come to faith. Thank you Emma for sharing – you are a great encourager

  4. “never being ‘sick enough’ to feel worthy of getting better and therefore hurting the people who love me by always staying sick”

    I related to a lot of this post, but in particular this line stood out.

    Another good post, thank you.

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