You might feel like you aren’t allowed to admit you’re struggling because you’re the fun friend. You’re the one who makes everyone laugh. You’re the one who lightens the mood. You’re the one who makes everyone around you feel better when they’re going through something, not the one who brings up their own problems and asks for help getting through the shitstorm.
But you have to remember, your friendships aren’t a one-way street. Your friends aren’t going to be upset if you try to talk to them about how you’re feeling. They aren’t going to judge you. They aren’t going to get annoyed at you bringing down the mood. They are going to be honored you opened up to them. And they are going to help you through your pain, the same way as you’ve always helped them through theirs. You don’t have to hide your feelings from them. You can tell them anything.
You might feel like you aren’t allowed to admit you’re struggling because you’re the strong one. The independent one. The one who never needs help from anyone because you can handle the world on your own. You might feel like expressing your vulnerability would be out of character, it would confuse everyone, it would make them uncomfortable. Worse, it might make them see you in a different light. It might make them think less of you.
But you have to remember, it takes strength to admit your feelings out loud. It takes courage to walk up to someone and tell them you need to talk. No one is going to fault you for going through a hard time. Honestly, they might actually be relieved to know that someone as put together as you is going through the same problems they’re going through. It might help you bond. It might strengthen your connection.
You might feel like you aren’t allowed to admit you’re struggling because other people are going through worse. You might feel guilty about complaining when there are so many beautiful aspects to your life, so many things you’re thankful about having, so many people who care about you and want the best for you. You might feel like opening up about your struggles will make you come across as selfish or greedy or insensitive, so you keep your mouth closed.
But you have to remember, you are allowed to feel the way you feel. You shouldn’t punish yourself over your own emotions. And while it’s good you have some perspective and can see the beauty in your own life, you shouldn’t be comparing yourself to others during the good times or the bad. You shouldn’t convince yourself you aren’t allowed to be upset, because you are. You don’t want to make your mental health worse by refusing to talk about how you feel. You don’t want to hurt yourself more by trying to do the right thing.
You might feel like you aren’t allowed to admit you’re struggling, but you have a right to speak your mind. You have permission to admit you are not okay.