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Yes, is all in my head

I used to think that I didn't face that much stigma against my mental illnesses because no one called me names or used it against me. However in the past few months I've realized that there is a different kind of stigma that I've been facing for a long time.

Quite often when people who do not understand mental illness try to talk about it, they make the illness sound illegitimate. I've been told to "calm down" in the middle of an anxiety attack, "do something that makes me happy" during an episode of depression, and even told to "snap out of it". There are times when the person is completely well meaning but is not educated on the issues, but I have also been told this by people I am close to and have talked openly about my mental illness with.

My brain doesn't operate the same way as most, so the normal coping mechanisms aren't going to work for me. By laughing and telling me that "everyone feels that way", you're telling me that not only is my illness not real, but neither is mental illness in general.

Medicine has come a long way throughout history. But there is still work to be done until there is parity between mental and physical health, and the two are discussed the same way in society. Because yes it is all in my head, just like your fractured bone is all in your arm.




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