The news cycle’s constantly changing. Before you look, there’s a diff story on the front page.
What just happened in the Olympics, off of what just happened in the French Open, provides us w a tremendous glimpse into some of the challenges we’re still facing as a society, as it pertains to understanding & coming TOGETHER arnd the topic of MH.
How often do 2 huge news stories, hit back-to-back like that, on such a world stage…where we can observe the reactions (the resistance), from talking heads, & everyday folks? Not often.
Not surprisingly, we still have a large camp of ppl who believe in both cases, the athletes were “quitters.” That MH isn’t “real.” That they made the “choice” to pull out bc they didn’t like their performance.
We know those ppl exist. And, I’ve beaten a dead horse over how the “1 in 5” campaigns further perpetuate this idea that those ppl calling out “quitters” in this case, believe MH doesn’t apply to them, & they’re in the “healthy/fine/normal” group. That’s a battle we’re gonna have to continue to fight.
BUT, here’s the other side of what those “1 in 5” campaigns do – a completely diff grp of ppl…& the grp I’m referencing in this quote card I just shared. It’s a grp that I AM IN myself: the grp who are diagnosed “mentally ill.” My “label” would be CPTSD. Much like…someone else’s label might be Bipolar, ADHD, Depression, etc.
But here’s where I differ, & here’s where I believe we as a society need to differ & need to educate: From the reactions I saw of FAR too many, there was a feel of – Those 2 are dealing w “general MH concerns. Don’t mix those together w REAL mental illness. It’s not fair to us.”
If we hold on to this belief, stigma never goes away. Do we know to what level Naomi/Simone suffer? How far down on the continuum they are? Now? 3 yrs ago? 3 yrs from now?
The only thing we do know is that whether from genetics, life experiences, lifestyle, etc neurobiology for ALL of us is affected. It’s at diff times in our lives…& to varying degrees…but it happens to us all.
If we downplay MH challenges, bc a person doesn’t have a label & WE have it ‘worse’ – “stigma” never goes away.