reply to post by Hefficide
Heff, man, good for you, and THANK YOU for your post here and others you've written, taking Frank about mental illness, etc. The thing is, most
people going through, or living with, such problems just don't have the will to speak openly - I think centuries of ingrained stigma have a lot to do
wiith that. Further, considering just about the only discussion out there on the topic comes from doctors and researchers - not the people struggling
with mental illnesses themselves.
So folks with mental illness (whether short-term or life-long) often not only avoid seeking help, but avoid even "admitting" to themselves they are
suffering from mental illness. There are still, to this day, a variety of stigma (stigmi?) which make it difficult for people to be willing to attach
themselves to such stigma. people think, I'm not a "looney" or a crazy person. Visions of mental hospitals full of that standard movie mental
patient - you know, the guy in the straight jacket, thrashing his head about non-stop, bashing his googly-eyed face into a bloody pulp. And then the
stigma at the other end of the spectrum, the simple, yet powerful(ly stupid) idea that if you go to any form of therapist, or take antidepressants,
etc., you're simply mentally weak. "Oh, boo-hoo" is what people think - or at least, what people who could use those treatments think people will
Kind of long-winded, but hopefully I'm getting my point across. Example, if you find out you've got a 95% blockage in a major artery, what do you
do? You say, "oh bleep my bleep with a bleeping chainsaw!", schedule your surgery, and start telling your friends and family, while dating them
jokingly to replace your bacon with turkey "bacon." At no point do you sit and fret about whether to just roll the dice because "what will they
think if they find out I have arterial plaque buildup?!"
So the folks who get the most raw deal when it comes to dealing with what ails them, are the people whose very ailment, in many cases, makes them the
least well-equipped to deal with it.
I've known many people with a wide variety of mental illnesses. Some aware of them, others apparently oblivious, but the one thing in common, none of
them ever really feel as though anyone quite understands what they're dealing with. Certainly nobody knows what a mental health facility is actually
like. All we have is movies! Well, and Heff. Seriously, it's almost impossible to find frank discussion
about mental health issues, so kudos to you for being a rare breed. I know for sure it helps people who know people with mental health issues of all
kinds, and there's sure to be people with their own problems who will see that there are actually people who understand, and maybe even help move
them along a path toward better mental health.
Again, my post here may be disjointed as hell, and I guess it's touching on a lot of things I've thought about. Mainly, though, it's a thank you
for being willing to talk about these things, and to say I'm really glad you've found a path that is working out well for you, and there are a
couple of people in my life which this here has given me some insights to discuss with them.