Being diagnosed with a mental illness was a major existential challenge for me. Where my asthma is confined to my lungs and my eczema to my skin, my bipolar disorder calls into question the very concept of who I am.
It challenges my identity. In responding to that challenge, I realized that I can use language to see myself in two different ways.
In the first, I understand myself as separate from the illness. I could say, for example, “I have bipolar disorder.” Using the illness as a noun implies that there’s a person and there’s an illness and that the illness is something to be possessed by the person.Read more on themighty.com