For the loved ones
Ryan wrote this story below and sent it to me with his permission to share. It’s hard to read. I think it’s important, however, to also have the hard conversations about what it’s like for the loved ones taking care of those who live with mental illness. God has performed a miracle in my life and He can in your life as well. Yes the illness is still present, but I’m a different person than I was in this story. Today my marriage is better, my hope is stronger, my faith is steadier, and my purpose is more clear. There is sorrow as I read Ryan’s words because of the difficulty of those days, but there is so much joy as I can truly see how God was preparing me to walk in my calling as an advocate for so many who are still suffering in silence.
Today I’m praying for the caregivers...especially the spouses. Your marriage can survive mental illness and is worth fighting for. It’s ok to feel the hard emotions and need support for yourself ——— I didn’t believe the doctor that Julie needed to be admitted to the hospital, so she called Julie in and made her tell me what had been going on.
I was so angry. I felt betrayed. I was embarrassed. I was scared.
We went home to pack her things and I was numb. It didn’t seem real. How could my Christian wife who loved to share about Jesus be suicidal? I just sat in the living room while she packed her bags. It was like she was going on a vacation, I still feel guilty for how numb I felt that day.
When we arrived at the hospital they were friendly. They worked with her doctor and gave us a plan of how they would treat her. I paid the money and they said that they needed to get her height and weight. They said she’ll be right back, and they took her away.
She didn’t come back. I waited and waited and she didn’t come back.
I finally asked someone where she was and they said she has been admitted you can come see her in 10 days. I threw a fit and they let me go up and see her. Little did I know that she just had an all out breakdown. When she came in the room she was like a caged animal. I gave her a hug and took her wedding ring home. ——— Photo from our days in Turkey when this story took place.