This letter was sent to us by a GrokNation reader, and edited for publication by the GrokNation staff in collaboration with the writer. We thank our readers in advance for treating the impact stories of your fellow Grokites with respect and sensitivity. (And if you need more information on mental health, please see the end of this piece for resources. Thank you!)
I just wanted to drop a quick email to say thank you to GrokNation. It’s so refreshing to read a blog, point of views and ways of life from someone you consider your hero. I’m not a parent or a person of faith, I still read every blog. Even though it may not apply to me, it’s important to me to know and understand the lifestyle of others. I re-blog / RT everything to try and get you guys the biggest audience possible. Grok is a great cause. I’m proud to support you guys as much as possible.
When I read Grok posts, I also try and read the replies. It’s incredible that so many people get involved, replying with their own stories and reaching out to one another. It’s the kind of humanity that’s hard to come by in today’s life. So when I see people opening up and being honest, I feel like I want to do that. And I want to put it to good use.
I think what hit me the most were the articles about mental health and suicide prevention. I’ve always been very reserved when it comes to talking about mental illness; I was suffering from severe depression alongside an anxiety disorder. It was difficult to come to terms with what was happening. I felt like an outcast.
Eventually over time. I was able to learn from my illness and accept it. Instead of letting it defeat me I would just fight it. That for me was a big turning point. It gave me something I hadn’t felt in a long time: hope. GrokNation has taught me is that it’s ok to open up and be honest about mental health-related issues. And The Big Bang Theory started to show me that no matter who you are, there are people out there that will love you for you “quirks and all.”
As I started to create a better life for myself, I have made friends with some of the TBBT fans, who have practically become family. Twice a year, a big group of us meets up in LA to attend a taping (see photo): five of us have matching TBBT tattoos and we wear custom-designed group t-shirts to tapings. It’s crazy that a TV show could bring me so much.
I’m finding better ways to cope on bad days. I have started blogging on the subject, in an effort to help myself more, but also in an effort to help others know that they are not alone. Sometimes a stranger can touch the life of someone more than a lifetime friend. A small gesture of compassion can influence that person to a better life. I want to be that person. And honestly, GrokNation has been one of my inspirations for this.
Do I still have anxiety and depression? Yes. Do I cope with it better today? Yes. Is it important for people to know that? Yes. Because mental illness is not a physical injury you can spot easily. Just because you can’t see something does not mean it’s not there. It’s a real thing and it’s scary. But GrokNation has taught me that being open about your issues can benefit others who are suffering: it can encourage them to open up and seek the help they need, instead of suffering in silence.
I’m proud to be such a fan, I’m proud to support the show and I’m proud to support such causes such as GrokNation. Because together we can make a difference.” So thank you, GrokNation team. Thank you for doing what you do. It really is making a difference.
Editor’s note: For more about mental illness, please read this GrokNation piece, which includes some basic information about types of mental illness as well as some resources, and this piece about suicide prevention. If you need additional help, contact your local mental health professionals or NAMI.org or the NAMI helpline, which can help you find local support. If it is an emergency, please call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.