Mental health is a topic that is on the rise and for good reason. Mental illness places an incredible burden on the individual, his/her family and friends, and the environment around them. It has nearly become normalcy to see a mentally unwell individual resort to physical abuse towards others to garner some kind of attention. A cry for help. In frustration.
What we need is to start tackling the stigma that’s associated with mental illness. We as a society don’t even bat an eyelash when we say we need medication for our physical illnesses, however once we say we need medication for our mind, everyone turns a blind eye. Why is it acceptable to treat someone with distaste when they require medicine for their mind? I understand it is frightening on many levels but this fear is largely because we are ignorant. Often times what we fear are things we do not understand. If we as a whole can put our egos aside, and say, ‘Hey, I am scared. And that’s ok. I can learn about the situation and from having a better understanding, I can put aside those fears’, I think we can be in a better place.
Tackling the stigma of mental illness has no overnight solution. I think we can start by focusing on the communities around us.
What are your thoughts? I would love to hear!