There are so many factors when it comes to "mental illness," childhood trauma is a big one & it's not the only one.
So it is so important to acknowledge the reality and widespread nature of adverse childhood experiences --- while at the same time, recognizing that some of us may have come pretty hard-wired for the difficulties we're experiencing or those difficulties may relate to other factors such as the gut biome, or a combination with altitude, etc.
I feel the need to say this because I don't know how many times I've been asked if I was abused as a child -- I've been asked a lot. After a psychotic episode, you get asked these things. AND I wasn't abused.
But what I was struggling with and didn't have a label for it -- was being 2e -- twice exceptional -- gifted with ADD.
They say that 2e kids generally hit a wall -- I didn't hit my wall until law school. Always before, I had managed to get those As in every class. There had been a lot of disorganization before, but law school was the first time I was to see the ADD grade spikiness -- "As" in Constitutional Law and Criminal Procedure -- a "D" in Corporations.
Well, I entered a writing competition to "write on" to Law Review which I did.
And then there were decades of frustrating and seemingly inexplicable "spikiness." I felt very much like Shawn Mendes in "Stitches"-- beaten up and beaten down -- but there were seemingly no wounds.
One of the reasons I repeat over and over and over again: build on strengths, compensate for weaknesses is that I know in my own life it is the difference between being at the top of the heap, and not being able to keep your head above water.
I also know how important peers are -- how important the mental health community is to me and how I seek out out twice exceptional people on the Orchid Mental Health Policy: Global facebook page by posting relevant items.
I also think there are A LOT of FACTORS --many surprising and unusual [such as the micro-biome and altitude] when it comes to dealing with mental ill health.
Some of those factors I think I have identified, maybe rightly or wrongly, and probably some I haven't identified or maybe mis-identified.
It's been a very unexpected journey. I'm so glad things worked out the way they have -- there was a time I didn't think I would ever say that.