I am Allergic to Mental Illness Stigma

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I am allergic to mental illness stigma.

I get an allergic reaction when I hear stigmatizing words or see stigmatizing behaviors.

My stigma allergy causes me to become hurt, wounded, upset and angry.

I am dumbfounded and aghast that people continue to stigmatize against people with mental illness, by using words, behaviors and actions that stigmatize people with mental illness in a derogatory, demeaning and unjust manner.

My stigma allergy treatment plan will depend on my symptoms and how often they occur and how severe they are.

Since there are no medications or treatment for mental illness stigma or my allergic reaction to mental illness stigma,

we all need to treat and cure the people who stigmatize against mental illness.

The first step in treating mental illness stigma allergies is to prevent or reduce our exposure to stigma.

We need to stay away from negativity and people who stigmatize,

and much more importantly,

we need to greatly reduce and end mental illness stigma.

The only way to stop mental illness stigma is to increase awareness about mental illness by educating others, telling your story and starting dialogs about mental illness.

Mental illness is a great topic and can become a wonderful and very interesting conversation.

When we all start talking more about mental illness, we will learn how prevalent it is.

You will become surprised at who has mental illness and how many people you know are touched by mental illness, either personally or in some other way.

Let us find the common bond we all have with mental illness, and then we can educate and help each other.

Mental illness and any words associated with mental illness do not need to be whispered.

Let’s get people to stop whispering words like mental illness, bipolar, Psychiatric hospital, suicide, therapy, Electroconvulsive therapy treatments (ECTs) and other words associated with mental illness.

Mental illness is a real illness and is not a character flaw.

Start talking, writing and spreading the word about mental illness and stigma.

Spreading the word about mental illness and mental illness stigma

is like spreading peanut butter and jelly on your toast.

Spreading the word about mental illness

is like icing on the cake.

It is good, beautiful, necessary, essential and is the most important part.

~written by Sue Walz

Related image


Bipolar & Stigma: A Problematic Paradox

written by Stephen Propst

Despite advances, diagnosis and treatment of bipolar, it still has a long way to go before capable, customized, compassionate care is the norm.

Today we have more reliable medications, with fewer side effects, than ever before. Yet if you live with bipolar disorder, quality care can be difficult to access. Significant disparity in insurance coverage continues. Stable employment is elusive, despite the Americans with Disabilities Act. And if you do get hired, who knows if you’ll receive acceptance—much less accommodation—in the workplace.

It’s a real paradox. Despite all the advances, a person with a mood disorder still encounters a challenging environment where he is often seen as a second-class citizen. Capable, customized, compassionate treatment is not the norm. Far too much chaos and confusion continues.

Despite all the advances, a person with a mood disorder still encounters a challenging environment where he is often seen as a second-class citizen.

Many people still spend years in treatment or therapy without a specific plan developed or a desired outcome discussed. Medications are often prescribed without proper education; moreover, inferior, cost-cutting drugs are often tried before a more desired option is prescribed. Pardon me, but that’s cuckoo!

Treatment issues aside, we still have a tremendous problem when it comes to making a proper diagnosis. On average, it takes 8–10 years from onset of symptoms for a person to receive an accurate diagnosis of bipolar disorder. Then, good luck finding a capable, caring psychiatrist who is taking new patients—not to mention who accepts your insurance.

Another problem is more basic in nature. Human beings, like snowflakes, are unique; however, people living with bipolar are often branded as uniquely different, leaving them feeling isolated and alone. They face tremendous stereotyping by the media, stigmatization by the public, and significant internal shame. The resulting self-imprisonment is sometimes worse than institutional incarceration. Many would rather seek refuge in a hospital than face an apathetic, even hostile, outside world.

Indeed, the bipolar condition itself is a paradox; it is biological in origin yet psychological in expression. While people living with a mood disorder can be creative, outgoing, and personable, many times the public perception focuses on outward manifestations, such as unpredictable behavior, erratic thoughts, and impulsive decisions.

And the people who one would think are in the best position to help are sometimes not able to because they are just too close to the situation. Even family members who have been educated on brain-based disorders may continue to struggle with long-standing memories of problems from the past.

Today’s mental health system still needs fixing. People living with bipolar still confront a society that can be cold and uncaring.

It’s high time to start recognizing bipolar as a treatable medical condition; to start providing more accessible, quality care; to stop reducing people to their diagnosis; and to stop stripping people of their humanity. Let’s advocate strongly for positive change. Let’s move beyond the problematic paradox we face today. Let’s promote the realistic possibility for a better tomorrow where wellness and well-being come first—for all of us.

Copyright 2017 – BpHope. All Rights Reserved.


Copyright © By Susan Walz and myloudbipolarwhispers.com – All written content and personal artwork is © myloudbipolarwhispers.com and Susan Walz. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author/owner/artist is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to My Loud Bipolar Whispers and/or Susan Walz with appropriate and specific directions to the original content.  (With the exception of the article titled “Bipolar & Stigma: A Problematic Paradox” written by Stephen Propst from BpHope.)

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/allergic/

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23 Comments

  1. Such an inspiring and hopeful blog. I have experienced the stigma, and it is incredibly hurtful. My narcissist of a “sister” has told anyone and everyone she knows about her “crazy” sister, including my brother. After years of her coming between us, and questions raised as to my “diagnoses” he now knows that CPTSD, anxiety and depression are words used to DESCRIBE my condition, not DEFINE. Much love to you.~

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I am very happy you liked my post. I am so sorry you have been stigmatized in such a painful way and by your sister too. I think that makes it maybe even worse. I am so sorry about that. We just have to keep educating. People who do not have mental illness do not seem to understand it at all, so we need to keep talking to them and educating them until people will begin to one day understand that mental illness is a real illness and is not a character flaw or weakness. It is a brain disease truly. Anyway one day I know stigma will be greatly reduced and words will be used more wisely and kinder and people with mental illness will be treated the way we should be and deserve to be. Have a happy, healthy and fabulous weekend. Thanks for reading. Hugs, Sue

      Liked by 1 person

    1. You are welcome and thank you for reading and for your kind comments. I really appreciate your kindness and I am happy you liked my post. Sorry you too have this illness. It is not fun and can be a very difficult and painful illness, I know. You must be a very strong survivor too. We are mental illness survivors and we should be proud of it. I hope you have a very happy, healthy and fabulous weekend. Love and hugs, Sue

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you. I am going to my youngest daughter’s show choir competition about three hours aways and have to wake up at 4:00 a.m. to ride the bus with the school. I am not looking forward to that because I can never make myself go to bed early. I look forward to my daughter’s performance, but not the getting up early and getting ready early in the morning. Once I get on the bus it will be great. Take care. Hugs, Sue

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much. I am so very happy that you liked my post. Thank you for the read and the extremely kind comments. I appreciate you and your words very much… from the bottom of my heart. YOur kindness makes me very happy. So, thank you, thank you, thank you. Thanks for sharing too. You could get a microphone and scream this in every town if you wanted to. That would be awesome, but please do not climb on the rooftops to do it. hahaha…. Love and hugs, Sue

      Like

  2. So well said, thank you for sharing. Stigma prevents so many people from speaking out and seeking help. The more each of us share our own stories of mental illness, the less alone others feel and the less power the stigma surrounding mental illness carries. Thank you for encouraging others to be open and honest. You are helping many people!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much for reading my post and for your very kind and encouraging words. I greatly appreciate them. I am happy you like my post. I truly hope and pray I am helping others. I keep trying my best. God gave me a voice and a story so I must use my voice and share my story. Hugs, Sue

      Liked by 1 person

  3. yes. yes. yes. scream this to the hills. this stigma needs to end, because it tears so many of us apart. i am recovering from anorexia, anxiety, and major depressive disorder and i could not have wished this to be said any other way. simply, YES. YES. YES. 💙

    Liked by 1 person

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