Being locked up in a psych ward several times is very confusing, especially when you get out. You don't know your ass from your elbows, and it's hard to experience, relate, or even cheer up. It's hard to give up everything you ever worked for because you have to focus on yourself. And being a woman and only focusing on yourself seems impossible because it's natural for us to want to relate and have close personal relationships. The road to recovery for me involved volunteering and working odd important jobs for local nonprofits. As a woman though, it was really hard to surrender and accept the fact that I was emotionally vulnerable and needed to take certain precautions and approach things on a colder level. In the hospitals, I felt like the men were treated differently - like they had less emotional problems or just formulaic drug problems, whereas a woman like me is looked upon like she’s bat shit crazy. The first time I left a psychiatric facility, I questioned my gender role for a long time after being broken down. I didn’t feel pretty. I felt masculine. I had to work it out in therapy. I just remember trying to explain it to my therapist. I felt like a man stuck in a woman’s body, but that's not really me at all.
Submitted by Anonymous, Edited by Arianne Keegan