The thing no one tells us as we're growing up, naive and innocent, is that it is not at all unlikely that at some point we could succumb to mental symptoms. We all know that yes, there is anxiety and there is depression and some people have goofy phobias and don't like to fly or ride elevators and sometimes people get overwhelmed and need to take time off and rest.
That does not begin to describe what really happens. That does not in any way prepare us for the possibility that at some point during young adulthood, we might feel like we are losing our damn minds.
If we make a corresponding analogy to a PHYSICAL set of equal horrors, it would be like finding out (in your first breakdown) that
"oh, we forget to tell you that yes, sometimes you might find yourself walking down the street and suddenly your flesh will being peeling away from your arms. It can really hurt."
"oh, didn't we mention that some sometimes out of seemingly nowhere the bones in your feet might separate from your ankles..."
"yeah, didn't tell you but it is not uncommon at all for a person's spleen to come unlodged and slide down the body till it becomes stuck in the knee joint... quite painful and scary when that happens."
Okay, I'm done now, lol.
But it just never ceases to amaze me how COMMON the horrific experiences of mental anguish are, and that in each and every one of us we are POSITIVE no one else has anything this bad, because if THIS was what mental breakdowns felt like, the entire damn world would be talking about it non-stop.