The End of a Stigma

The divide across the country, and the world, over mental illness needs to be put to an end.

Globally, there are 1.1 billion people that are affected by a mental illness or substance abuse according to Our World Data. The stigma that has formed over this topic is pointless and fueled by the fact that not enough people are educated on the issue.

In a large survey in the United Kingdom(UK), most of the people said one of the following things: 1) most  mentally ill people are dangerous, 2) eating disorders and alcoholism/substance abuse are brought onto the person by themselves, and 3) they believe it is too hard to try to talk to the people that have mental illnesses.

Little do they know or realize that they are more than likely working with, friends with, dating, or even married to someone that has a mental illness, and they have no idea.

The stigma against any of these mental health issues needs to end.

It is time for people in today’s age to evolve and learn to accept that some people are sick, but not in a physical way. Some people need more help than any person can see or tell by just looking at them.

The pain of having a mental illness is unbeknownst to the average Joe. It is one of those things where if you do not have or suffer from a mental illness, then you cannot relate to the issues or problems that the affected individual may be feeling.  

As someone who just recently was diagnosed with having a mental illness, I can attest to all of this.

For months I had closeted all my problems and kept them far away from everyone–not allowing them to see that I was in pain and hurting. There was no real reason for me to throw all my pain onto someone else if it wasn’t something that they had to deal with.

I was trying to damage as few people as possible.

When I was first coming to a realization that there was something wrong with me, my boyfriend was beginning to pick up on these signs, too. He was starting to notice that there was something off, and he was waiting for me to come to him, but I never did.

So he came to me.

It was a very hard talk, but it was essential in my healing process. It was very emotional for the both of us. It all became very real to me after I said it out loud. It was hard for him to hear just how deeply I was being affected by these problems.

These problems ran deeper than he, or anyone else, would’ve ever been able to guess.

He finally saw what I had been hiding from him and how much it was affecting me. He saw that I was hurting so much more than he was expecting. Yet, he didn’t know how to help.

The general public doesn’t know how to help the people around them that have a mental illness, along with not having the proper education on the topic itself.

There are many resources that are provided to anyone with internet connection to seek help. Mental Health is a popular site that you can reach if a loved one, or someone you know, is having any issues with a mental illness.

After I had finally come out about the issues that I face, my boyfriend and family took to the internet to do their own research and become more educated on the problem at hand. They found out who I should talk to and what they should do around the house to help me become better.

The only way to fix the stigma against mental health is to educate the world.

The internet is a great place to start for someone who is trying to learn more about mental health. Just start out by typing ‘mental health’ into your Google search bar and hit ‘search’. You will have thousands and thousands of articles and searches pop up before your eyes.

There are ways to fix this stigma.

If you have a mental illness, encourage your friends and family to learn more about what it is that you are going through, so they can help if need be. If not them, talk to your guidance counselor, nurse, CARE team, your teacher, your coach, or even the school’s therapist.  

If you or a loved one is affected by any mental illness, try to seek help as soon as possible. The best way to put an end to this problem is to stop it before it gets any worse.