A mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person
“Only with open conversation can we break the stigma behind depression, Let’s start talking and end it together”
This word stigma and mental Illness go hand and hand, for so many years there has been a stigma attached to mental illness. People didn’t talk about it and people lived in shame because of it, afraid, alone, acting and dying inside. The sad part is they have no reason to feel this way at all. Negative emotion is felt by all of us and negative emotions control people who struggle with mental illness, depression, anxiety and so on.
How did it happen that people stopped talking openly about their feelings, their emotions? Why is it that so many of us just feel that we have to hold this inside and not talk? Happy feelings we talk about openly and with pride and then we let them go as fast as they came with out a second thought. But the negative emotions and bad feelings we think about over and over, and let grow inside of us and control us and destroy us hold us back and stop us from growing into the people we were met to be.
What makes these negative emotions and feelings so strong? We feel we have to hold on to them for so long when they cause us so much pain? The stigma behind depression and mental illness is so strong because of the way we were taught to view it, and keep it a secret and not be open and shine a light on it and take it’s power away. Although these days, things are starting to change and people are starting to talk and I am one of those people. I have to tell you I will not stop talking because the more I talk the more people I reach and then those people start to talk and sooner or later we will all feel free to open up and talk. I dream of the day that we are completely open about these so called taboo issues. It motivates me to do my part and break this stigma that has been placed on mental illness.
I have a simple and easy thing that all of us can do. It is plan and simple and it is one of my pet peev’s, it is a trigger. It is the way that we use the word depression. People will often say when it is a cloudy day it is so depressing outside... When a sad song comes on the radio it is a depressing song, change the channel. Something bad happens in life and it is soooo depressing. When this happens it makes my heart jump and my mind reacts and I feel a scene of humiliation... Why? because depression is being minimized. It strikes me in the heart that people think of it in such a unserious way. That people who suffer with depression and mental illness really have no problems at all, it is as easy as the sun coming out and changing that frown up side down.. Well let me ask a simple question would you switch that word depression with Cancer, or M.S., or C.F., or any other illness that kill people?
Let’s stop minimizing depression because it kills people and start saying what we feel… Because a cloudy day or a sad song or something that happen in the news doesn’t make you feel like you shouldn’t get out of bed, doesn’t make you feel like you don’t deserve happiness, doesn’t make you feel like an outsider, doesn’t make you feel like you have nowhere to turn…and it does not make you feel like there is no way out… It just makes you feel sad…So say that.
I would like to think we could all do our part in breaking the stigma behind depression. Minimizing it and using it out of context , throwing it around so easily in conversations were it doesn’t apply isn’t helping. But start talking openly about your emotions and how we truly feel... that does help. We are all human and we all feel emotion good, bad, ugly, it is all there inside of us. Once we start talking and being aware of our emotions the stigma behind depression and mental illness has no chance at surviving.
We can all do our part to help each other by being honest and open about how we feel. Break the stigma and start talking, we can live life and being happy! That’s what we're here for.