I am one of the 1 in 5 who struggles with mental health. I have, in fact, been plagued by mental health problems since my early teenage years, it got worse up into adulthood. I am now 32 years old. In the beginning, I was embarrassed about it, just to be honest. Hearing all the negative stigma and all… it took about 5 years to realize be hiding my mental illness is going right along with the stigma, it was like I was contributing to the negative stigma. I eventually got tired of the negative thoughts on mental illness. I started to be more open about it. Now, I don’t care who know. I don’t care what others say. I know I didn’t choose this. I know it’s not ‘all in my mind.’ I know I’m not ‘crazy,’ as most people say.
My aim is to make a significant contribution to eliminating mental health stigma, which sadly still prevails. There are still many many misunderstandings about mental illness. Nobody is protected or immune— rich, poor, young, old.
Even if you do not have a history of depression, without warning, it can strike upon either the slightest or most significant change in life circumstance. We cannot immune ourselves from its reach. The most frightening reality is that we are all quite possibly one-life changing moment from being wrapped in depression’s tentacles. Losing a child, getting a divorce, the death of a loved one, any of these, all of these, can send you spiraling into a pit of a mental illness, depression. At any moment. Even people on top hit rock bottom.
Mental illness does not discriminate… it can happen, it can affect anyone regardless of any age and any gender. It doesn’t matter. It affects you in all stages of life, from birth through adulthood. And it affects you in every aspect of your day to day living. It is an equal opportunity illness that can afflict us all at anytime.
Mental illness does not care if you are a Hollywood celebrity, like Wil Wheaton(who shared his amazingly candid story on medium about his battle). His story….
When our mental health becomes compromised, it can prevent you from coping, engaging in life, and realizing our full potential. It affects our family, productivity, and friendships, which in turn impacts our society and communities.
Just like there are many physical illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, or colitis there are too many mental illnesses. Some may experience the constant worry, fear and debilitating effects of anxiety or maybe panic attacks, while others may endure the extreme lows of depression. Many may suffer the life altering effects of an eating disorder, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, or a trauma disorder, and others can live with schizophrenia or psychosis, just to name a few.
Just like other physical illnesses, mental illnesses are mild, but the others can be much more severe. Be it anxiety or diabetes, professional treatment is usually needed although there isn’t the perfect cure but there is hope.
Mental illness affects everyone
Mental illness does not discriminate— it affects all ages, genders, and ethnicities. While people of all socio-economic and education levels are vulnerable, poverty is a particularly exacerbating factor. When people struggle with poverty, their quality of life is compromised. The hardships and the stress they experience often puts them at a greater risk for depression, anxiety, and a acute need for mental health services.
I’m Having a mental illness problems they may have challenges focusing with parenting and managing family life, finding a job, focusing at school, or earning sufficient income; it may be difficult to find housing and some may experience discrimination and very negative attitudes. All this can lead to isolation and an inability to lead a healthy and productive life.
Mental illness does not care if you are a young loving child… with loving, caring parents. It doesn’t care if you’re the star of the football team.
Both adults and children experience mental illness. 1 in 5 people experience a diagnosable mental disorder in any given year. In Louisiana it’s estimated that there are 650,000 adults and 245,000 children who have diagnosable mental illness. One-third of Americans between the ages of 15-54 will develop a mental illness in their live. The impact of mental illness and the promotion of mental health are major public health concerns, yet mental illness still remains widely misunderstood. Mental illness is more common than any other major public health concern. It is more common than cancer, diabetes, or heart disease. Psychiatric is the number one reason for hospital admissions nationwide.
At any given moment, almost 21 percent of all hospital beds are filled by people with mental illness. Nearly eight million children and teens have serious emotional problems. Mental illness is common in all walks of life. It’s a little known fact that many famous and influential people have suffered from severe mental illness, including Abraham Lincoln, Beethoven Van Gogh, and Winston Churchill, just to name a few. Mental illness falls along a continuum of severity. The most serious and disabling conditions affect five to ten million adults (2.6% to 5.4% of the population) and three to five million children ages five to seventeen (5% to 9%) in the United States.
Did you know?
- Approximately 18% of all children in foster care are placed in residential treatment facilities due to their complex mental health needs each year.
- Nearly 40% of youth in secure care have a serious emotional disturbance.
- 20% of inmates entering prison receive mental health services.
Tragically teen suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death of teenagers in Louisiana. For the same time period, nearly 62 percent of the attempts were by females while just over 38 percent were attempted by males. In looking at difference in age groups, persons in the 20-29 and 30-39 age groups have more attempts while persons in the 60 years and older have the fewest attempts.
Until everyone in this world, truly recognize and accept mental illness… we’re going to keep losing our amazing people we love.
Reminder: youth mental health is one of the most pressing issues of our time.
When we fell to interfere when children show signs of mental illness, the damaging consequences are far ranging, and can be long-term into adulthood.
So like I said mental illness does not discriminate. It can happen to anybody no matter the situation, and mental illness surely don’t care if you’re ready for it, or if you can handle it, it just creeps up, not a warning, and it happens at any given moment.
I didn’t get major depression and anxiety because I didn’t eat all my vegetables when I was little, I hated math, or because I don’t like the Beatles. Demi Lovato also came out about his struggles with depression and anxiety. There’s so many myths that surround this disorder. It can happen to anyone, it could happen to you, you, you, and you. It does not discriminate, like I said. Look around you, I inspire you to look around you, wherever you are right now. Look at your close friends, look at your immediate and wider family. The person with a mental illness could be sitting right next to you.
They might be the hard worker, the best joker, your most intelligent family member, the one you’ll never suspect to be suffering— believe me that’s the thing; some of us who have depression, panic attacks, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts, and more are so scared of the three in four who are “normal” finding out that we make sure we are skillful at covering it up.
We smile, we say that we’re okay, we get on with our day the best way we can and most times suffer in complete. By the way… what is normal?? Would you like my definition of okay?!
Messed Up/Screwed Up, Insecure, Unbalanced And Emotional.
Just being honest… I am not proud or pleased to have a mental illness problem but I’m not going to be quiet about it because of fear… fear of never getting a job just because I have depression. My job now is to help others by speaking up about it, and encouraging others to get the treatment that they need, and I also want to encourage others to join me. You are not alone. I am not alone.
According to the World Health organisation, by 2020 depression will be the second leading cause of world disability. This demonstrates the sheer significance of depression in terms of public health, but behind these facts and figures there are individuals who endure this debilitating illness on a daily basis and this is unquestionably more critical. In light of these statistics, I really hope more funding goes towards the treatment that so many people desperately need.
I really think we need a culture change ourselves honestly. We need to take much more notice of ourselves… each other. We also need to learn to be mindful and listen to our bodies. It is much more than a case of “eating your five day and exercising regularly”— mental health problems can affect regular juicers and gym goers too. It doesn’t matter if you’re happily married, happy, and have a highflying job, or even a celebrity, and still suffer because mental illness does not care who you are. No amount of fame or success can keep you immune from them. It’s not about a person’s circumstances.
It don’t matter if you have excess to everything… we’ve all dreamed… mental illness don’t care. Error of thinking: you can go out and “buy” good health— you most certainly cannot.
Time and time again we hear the way depression has lied to many people, how their own brains give them false messages that stand in the way of them seeking help. Prolonged depression can make believe that opening up to people in your life is the same as bothering them. When you’re really not bothering them.
A depressed mind is like a sieve… only negative thoughts make it through. You can’t compute the positive things that are happening in your life. Even if you have so much to be thankful for.
Research shows that the best way to challenge these stereotypes is through firsthand contact with others who experience mental illness. There’s a number of local and national campaigns are trying to change public attitudes to mental illness.
Mental illness does not discriminate…. but sometimes people do.
Never give up! Remember… you are not alone. Always remember that there is hope.
If you, or someone you know struggling with mental health problems and you’re ashamed to seek help… don’t be ashamed. Don’t be embarrassed. It can happen to anybody and you must never give up. Getting the help and treatment… you’ll begin to feel like your natural self again. It’s worth it and also astonishing….
You got this! Keep fighting and keep pushing! Get treatment! You deserve to live life and set your mind free. Live healthy!