Hello, I’m Mike Ehrmantrout. I’m glad to be joining Paulissa Kipp in writing the Recovering From Mental Illness blog.
As a child, I suffered multiple traumas. I joined the U.S. Army when I was 17 and served as a Cannon Crewmember/Gunner in a Field Artillery unit. At 23, I was deployed to Iraq for Operation Desert Storm. Upon my return, Army doctors diagnosed me with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). I left the Army in 1992. The PTSD got out of control in 1996, and I tried to commit suicide. PTSD, like all mental illness, is a battle fought each and every day. I also struggle with bipolar disorder. I’ve been hospitalized several times due to my illnesses. I don’t consider myself recovered, but I’m certainly in the process of recovery. I’ve learned some good coping mechanisms, but it’s a daily battle to keep away from substance abuse and other unhealthy coping strategies.
I Still Struggle with Mental Illness
Writing for a blog about mental illness recovery might imply I’m recovered from my illnesses. As mentioned before, I’m still on the journey. I don’t have everything figured out, and there are still many days I isolate from the whole world. But the reason I’m writing this blog is to let others know I’m here and I care. The deep pain I experience is common to those of us with mental illness. I hope we can be there for each other, to teach one another how we cope and to help each other mitigate our pain and suffering. I’m looking forward to learning from readers how they cope.
That’s why I’m happy to be here. My goal for this blog: to accurately dispense information and help you know there are many others like you. We’ll compare lessons learned and mistakes made along the way, while hopefully developing valuable relationships.