Hello, and thank you all for your continued support of this blog and this cause!
I am writing this on giving Tuesday 2020 as not only another unique entry to the page, but to help drum up more interest and possibly more donations for the Tourette’s Association of America! If you have not had a chance to check out their wonderful website, I highly recommend doing so. Whether you have TS, know and love someone who does, or are simply curious about the disorder, they have resources for EVERYONE! You can visit the website, and make donations here: Tourette’s Association of America
Today’s blog revolves around something so simple: Being honest.
I mean, it sounds simple enough right? Yet for me, being honest about my Tourette’s was not only a long journey, but was a journey of different motives and dialouge along the way.
For most of my life, I never told anyone about my TS unless approached. This started to change in early adulthood after graduating high school. I started to open up more about having TS, but not for the reasons most might suspect.
TS was not something at that time in my life I was proud of. I hated that I had something I did nothing wrong to be hindered by, and that it was not becoming less noticeable as the doctors said happens with a lot of patients after adolescents. Faced with this reality, I fell into a spiral of self-depreciation and only told people about my TS as a way to push them away. I figured if I hated it, so would they, and we might as well just get it out of the way and not bother trying to pretend we could have normal relationships. My dialogue was fueled with vulnerability and despair, and it wasn’t until I met my husband that this started to change.
More than ready to resign myself to the fact that I’d never find love, when he approached me to date, I told him flat out about my TS and expected him leave. But he didn’t, and the only thing that had changed was I really didn’t want him to walk away. When I spoke to him on the issue, my dialogue and tone changed despite the same fear I had that he’d end up hating it, or me, and it opened up a whole new world.
It took many more years to become more open about my TS in the way I am today, but it was something I was actively working at instead of giving up on. At 25 I finally decided to make my having TS public information to everyone through Facebook and was overwhelmed by the support and kind words offered. Now 30 years old, I am proud to say I am an adult with Tourette’s, and I have achieved so many goals despite of it.
I guess the point of all this is, is that coming to terms with TS is just like any other diagnoses. There is often fear, anger, and even shame. Opening up about having TS isn’t something you should feel pressured to do until you are ready. Don’t let what can be perceived as bravery from others who do speak about it freely make you feel like you have to go out and do the same. Just keep in mind that the way you feel about it today can change tomorrow. The way you express those feeling can change tomorrow. You’ll live and you’ll learn. You’ll find your own unique language with it, and just as TS is ever changing, so are we as humans