katie bridgewater wrote:We don't talk about all physical illnesses under one umbrella term and neither should we with mental health problems really.
Duellist wrote:katie bridgewater wrote:We don't talk about all physical illnesses under one umbrella term and neither should we with mental health problems really.
I think 'mental health' suffers for the umbrella term, but benefits from being vaguely separate in some ways. On the one hand, there is one set of doctors (psychiatrists) who deal with all mental health issues from severe phobias and cyclothymia all the way to paranoid schizophrenia and the most severe dissociative disorders. They might have their specialisations (I am not sure), but the public seems to see a 'one size fits all' man in a white coat. On the other hand, anything more than depression is meant to be diagnosed by a psychiatrist and not a GP in the UK; essentially, the medical profession considers that it is a broad enough set of issues that it has its own set of doctors, like cancer.
If we look at 'mental health' as a category equivalent to 'oncology' or 'orthopaedics', I suppose it is not so far off (especially given that I hear 1 in 4 of us will develop a mental illness, compared to 1 in 3 for cancer) and so it works as a compromise. I mean, we are happy to have a group of disorders known as 'auto-immune' even though the term encompasses everything from hayfever and psoriasis to lupus and transverse myelitis.
The problem is that the average person hears 'mental illness' and thinks of schizophrenia (albeit usually a rather exaggerated version they once saw in a film) and multiple personalities. They forget that depression is a mental illness, that the strange urge to check if your front door is locked or to keep washing your hands could be a mental illness. The same statistics that say one in four will develop a mental illness say one in six adults is currently suffering from one. I think it might help the stigma if people were more aware of the lower end of the spectrum, so maybe adding a few 'odd' issues to the list of recognised mental illnesses might force people to re-evaluate their opinion of the mentally-ill.
I am not sure how bipolar is any more of an issue for co-workers and employers than ME, but one has the awful label of 'mental illness' and is somehow worse in people's minds. Ironically, bipolar is easier to treat and more responsive (usually) to the right medication. Schizophrenics function in society and there are more than you'd think out there working normal jobs (Care in the Community has a lot to answer for) with no voices in their heads as long as they keep taking their pills.
In the end, I suppose mental illness is like homosexuality and paganism; there will always be those who will be scandalised, but things might not really change until everyone is out of the closet and able to be open about who they are.
Muddy Fox wrote:I think it doesn't help people to become less scandalised by mental illness when people use terms such as "mad", " psycho", "weirdo" etc in a derogortary fashion or as a means of insulting people who are a bit different.
Niwalen wrote:Lots of people have mental illness and no one will ever even know, because they seem so normal, and they don't want to say anything because of all of the discrimination that exists out there. Spiritual communities are especially intolerant, and all of the pagans I have ever met have had plenty of issues and flaws, yet somehow "mental illness" is what gets singled out as being supposedly incompatible with enlightenment. But not everyone with a mental illness is apt to interpret spiritual ideas in a delusional way.
Explorer wrote:My observation is that mentally instable people can create quite some havoc in spritual settings, especially when it gets intense and emotional.
It can be harmless and just annoying, like when somebody grabs all the attention to channel their goddess, king arthur or whatever. But it can also be violently dangerous, I've once been in a very small room with somebody who suddenly jumped up screaming and grabbed a sword.
What would be the difference between someone who is suffering from a life trauma or someone who is suffering from a mental illness?
Aphritha wrote:What would be the difference between someone who is suffering from a life trauma or someone who is suffering from a mental illness?
Explorer wrote:My point is that people shouldn't screw things up for others. Especially when that is risky.
Aphritha wrote:Explorer wrote:My point is that people shouldn't screw things up for others. Especially when that is risky.
Well, of course not, regardless if its a mental illness, trauma, personality flaw, or a two foot talking growth out of someone's head. I see your point there. I was just questioning out of curiosity....I've seen so many people who seem to have gone through a trauma that end up being told its a mental illness...I just get confused on where one draws the line.
The Icarus Project envisions a new culture and language that resonates with our actual experiences of 'mental illness' rather than trying to fit our lives into a conventional framework. We are a network of people living with and/or affected by experiences that are often diagnosed and labeled as psychiatric conditions. We believe these experiences are mad gifts needing cultivation and care, rather than diseases or disorders. By joining together as individuals and as a community, the intertwined threads of madness, creativity, and collaboration can inspire hope and transformation in an oppressive and damaged world. Participation in The Icarus Project helps us overcome alienation and tap into the true potential that lies between brilliance and madness.
Heddwen wrote:I do not subscribe to the view that medical intervention is a bad thing . The concept that doing without medication and seeking alternative healing modalities can be dangerous in some cases. That is not to say that alternative therapies can't compliment traditional treatment.
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