According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 25% of those with mental illness feel that people are sympathetic about their situation. There is nothing shameful about having a mental illness. The only thing about mental illness that is shameful is the stigma that surrounds it. Lindsay Holmes has put together the following beautiful congregation of quotes about the stigma surrounding mental illness.
At the root of this dilemma is the way we view mental health in this country. Whether an illness affects your heart, your leg or your brain, it’s still an illness, and there should be no distraction.
– Michelle Obama
I think it’s really important to de-stigmatize mental illness in any form. I think there’s a lot of people that are carrying around guilt and shame and baggage for stuff that doesn’t matter. Everybody is going through something, everybody has had something that they’ve had to overcome.
We need so much more openness, transparency and understanding that it’s OK to talk about depression as an illness. It’s not a weakness. It’s not a moral shortcoming. It’s not something people brought on themselves.
-John F. Greden, M.D.
It is an odd paradox that a society, which can now speak openly and unabashedly about topics that were once unspeakable, still remains largely silent when it comes to mental illness.
You are not your illness. You have an individual story to tell. You have a name, a history, a personality. Staying yourself is part of the battle.
No one would every say that someone with a broken arm or a broken leg is less than a whole person, but people say that or imply that all the time about people with mental illness.
-Elyn R. Saks
What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candor, more unashamed conversation about illnesses that affect not only individuals, but their families as well.
We know that mental illness is not something that happens to other people. It touches us all. Why then is mental illness met with so much misunderstanding and fear?
We take care of our dental health. We don’t take care of our mental health… I think the solution to making this world better is if we would just be healthy, mentally.
A child’s mental health is just as important as their physical health and deserves the same quality of support. No one would feel embarrassed about seeking help for a child if they broke their arm — and we really should be equally ready to support a child coping with emotional difficulties.
Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but stigma and bias shame us all.
Click HERE for the full article on Huffington Post.