Can mental illness ever be de-stigmatized in a society when those suffering with this ailment are denigrated unabashedly by many, especially when it is inclusive of the very professionals meant to help??
I dont believe society wants to deal with it in entirety and beyond the surface of it.
Everyone claims to be accepting and professes sympathy, but the reality seems to be quite the opposite. Having a mental illness puts you at a disadvantage. Especially when you are in a situation that is volatile or detrimental to your own safety. Instead of protecting the mentally ill person, they are subjected to persecution. They are imprisoned and medicated. They are labeled uncooperative and psychotic.
I know because it happened to me. I have been suffering emotional/mental abuse from my son. He taunts me to the point where I am triggered and react negatively. Once I do, he turns his camera on and records me. He, becomes the voice of reason, and I become the unstable one. This last episode, I was taken to the hospital for a psych evaluation and placed on a 72 hour hold. My accusations about my child were viewed as hallucinations and I was deemed psychotic and unstable.
The persons in a position of authority- doctors/nurses, police officers, psychiatrists, psychologists, counselors/therapists, social workers....humiliated me. Belittled me. Vilified me. My resistance to or questioning of their conventional standard of operations simply was not acceptable or an option.
Accepting and conforming to their demands was the only way to deal with the issue at hand and I was to do so quietly. Fulfilling their expectations was the only way to accomplish any positive outcome of the situation at hand. Because, having a mental illness does not allow me any rights to advocate for myself. My voice, like so many others who suffer with mental illness, is silenced due to those stigmas.
And people wonder why suicide keeps happening and at an alarming rate. Maybe, it's because of the stigma the mentally ill experience from society and from the very professionals whom are expected to be more understanding, but are in fact, more judgemental and patronizing of those with a mental illness.
#MentalIllness #Stigma #MentalHealthAwareness #MentalHealth