I have began feeling paranoid about three years ago. I remember I was on the golf course and I started getting panicked. I looked around and I was terrified. I believed that people could read my mind and that I was being watched by everyone. I had to leave and I ran to my car in the parking lot and took off. I am not sure why this happened, but I went to a doctor and talked about anxiety. I was diagnosed with having socially anxiety, OCD, ADHD, tourettes syndrome, depression and panic disorders. I was confused and I started thinking how this could happen to me. I was always the type of person who never understood what mental problems were and I never thought I could have mental problems. I always thought people who suffer from those things were “crazy,” but now I understand my problem is my brain. It is a real disease and other people have the same thing I have. I have become much more aware of others like me and I can relate to them. I have become much kinder and more compassionate toward people who suffer from all sorts of brain diseases. I started taking medicine to help with panic attacks, but they are still there. I try to leave the house, but it is difficult when I am around crowds.
I am not exactly sure how these diseases occur, but in my case I believe it stems from a skull fracture I suffered in 2005 when I was playing baseball. I was hit in the head near my right temple and suffered a skull fracture and a severe brain contusion. I recovered, but I do believe that an event like that can actually alter a persons personality and perhaps effect the chemicals in the brain. This was not my fault and I cannot say for certain if this is what caused my mental health issues, but I can honestly say the diseases of the brain are as real as any other disease. I can relate all those who have been told to just “get over it.” This is not something I can control, I can cope with this and take treatments, but it is a disease I have. I know others have the same thing and in my experience I have learned that this can happen to anyone at anytime. I just wish the stigma attached to mental health problems will disappear and the world will see that it does not make person weird or crazy it just means they have a disease and need help. Help in the same way a person who has had a heart attack or stroke need medical treatment. Thank you for reading this.