Mental health is an unknown and internal battle we are fighting today. The word “mental illness” grabs attention the moment it’s uttered. With attention, comes the stigma attached to it and how people judge or rather react to a person suffering from it. Mental illness is a concerning issue and in the recent light of events it also puts forward the thought that what may seem “okay” may not actually be okay.
The lockdown has been harsh on people suffering from mental health issues like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, OCD, etc. The zero distraction and interaction phase has harmed the mental health of individuals as the environment has been stressful with panic all around.
What’s more bothering is that it’s 2020 and talking about mental health is still a taboo and we as a society have failed to create a safe space for people suffering from it. Social stigma and discrimination may affect the person suffering and worsen the situation by stopping him from seeking the help he requires.
Reasons why mental illness is a taboo
- The fear of how others may react to this news may be one major reason why individuals with mental illness refrain from taking any help.
- The “people have bigger problems than you” mentality is another contributing factor. It is not only insensitive to address someone’s problem by calling them small compared to others, but also makes them feel that they are hyping their situation trying to seek attention which makes them push further away from seeking help.
- Another major and very prevalent reason has been calling people with mental illnesses “mad” or “crazy” which makes them shy away from confronting their issues and worsens their mental state further.
What to do if you identify mental health issues?
- Seek professional help
- Talk to someone you are close to. It can be your family, friends, or even that friend you met online.
- Know your condition better. Study about your symptoms, triggers, and treatment
- Try to communicate as much as possible
- Be in touch with your emotions
- Hype yourself up with things you love doing
With the alarming rates of suicides, we can now come to the conclusion that depression is real, anxiety is real, and most importantly, MENTAL HEALTH is real.
It is very important for people with mental health issues to feel that their feelings and emotions are valid. Be a kinder friend today and initiate a conversation with that long lost friend. Ask them how they have been really and how are they holding up. There has been enough talking about it and now it’s time to do something as mental illness is far more complex than perceived. Kindness is priceless. Have an open mind and listen to someone in need. Don’t tell them you understand their situation and the feelings associated with it and make them feel that their mental illness is just “sadness”.
For a better world to live in, where minds aren’t weary by negative thoughts, be kind, love unconditionally, and make mental health a priority today!