Mental health stigma is the widespread, systemic devaluing in our society against people with mental health illnesses. Stigma is very pervasive in our society, and it is a reason why so many people with completely treatable conditions suffer needlessly, and sometimes tragically. It is a generic term, but covers all negative actions, perceptions, beliefs and attitudes towards people who deal with issues pertaining to mental health. Millions of people struggle with their mental health, and we need to be a society that does not discriminate or ostracize people because of mental illness, but instead we should accept and embrace them, rally and support them, just as we would for someone who is fighting a physical illness such as cancer.
Talk openly about mental health
Always and I mean always continue to educate yourself and others.
Encourage the equality of both physical and mental health
Positivity over negativity (empower over shame)
Treatment is key to survival, be honest about it.
Try and not to harbor self-stigma
- Help people better recognize mental illness and be more equipped to avert harmful acts.
- Help those who struggle with mental health to obtain the best help and treatment.
- Reduce discrimination and hostility against people with mental health illness, thereby empowering them for more successful outcomes.
- Better enable caregivers and loved ones to have the most effective support for those who need it.
- Result in a safer society for us all, as those who deal with the most severe diagnoses will be less likely to render harm to themselves or others.
“Depressed people are unstable.”
“Someone with schizophrenia is dangerous.”
“A person in a mental institution is insane.”
“Someone with an eating disorder can control it.”
“That person is seeing a therapist. There’s something wrong with them.”
“Mental illness is similar to insanity.”
“Depressed? C’mon already, snap out of it, stop being such a downer!”
“Someone who is bipolar is difficult to get to know.”
“Someone with borderline means they are close to being crazy.”
“He has ADD, he is supposed to act that way.”
“You are responsible for your mental issues.”
“Go see a shrink!” (Used as an insult against someone).
“Stop using (INSERT CONDITION) as a crutch! Man up and be responsible for once.”
“Oh she has (INSERT CONDITION), we should lower our expectations of her.”