If you are a regular human being, odds are you struggle to ask for help. I, for one, definitely do. When an individual refuses to ask for help it is for one of the three reasons:
a) the belief that it can be pushed through and the person will become stronger for it
b) that somehow asking for help will give the appearance that the individual is weak
c) the belief that the problem is not big enough to worry/annoy other people about
With insomnia, help seems to be a wishful idea. How can someone help with another’s sleeping habits? It is not like they can strap the insomniac down and POOF the person is sleeping.
However, insomniacs can easily put themselves in harm’s way without really noticing until it is too late. I’d like to give an example to help illustrate how I practically give myself heart attacks.
A few days ago, I had two major assignments that I had to get done, but I could feel the exhaustion getting to me. Nights prior had consisted of maybe three and a half hours of sleep. Feeling as though I had no choice, I ended up drinking two Monsters and a 5 Hour Energy. Now I know that sounds terrible and you’re probably thinking “she’s going to kill herself” or “how can someone think that’s okay” as this is what my roommates yelled out and I completely agree…now. During the act, I really wasn’t aware of what I was doing. Yes, I knew that I was downing caffeine to stay awake, but the implications of the act did not come to mind. All I was focused on was getting my mind to be alert enough to finish the assignments. Fast forward to the end of the day, and I felt like my heart was going to explode. I was shivering but was not cold. I felt ill, but I was not nauseous. As someone who hasn’t gone to the doctors in more years than I’d like to admit, I was ready to go to the hospital. BUT I DIDN’T. Why? Because I didn’t want to admit my actions were wrong and that I needed help.
Looking back, do I wish I would’ve gotten help? Yes. Will I do so in the future? I sincerely hope so. In our competitive society, it is important to remind ourselves that we need others to depend on. For those who love us, no issue is too small. We were made to flourish together and to do so we have to be transparent with one another.
My advice to all my fellow insomniacs out there is to find someone that you feel you comfortable talking to and make it a goal to telling them about the small stuff from day to day. This way, when something bigger happens, it will be your natural instinct to reach out to them.
My advice to all the loved ones of insomniacs is not to yell at them for their actions. Once you show judgment, it makes it more likely that they will hold out from getting help just so they don’t have to admit they were wrong.