I hate stigma. It makes me feel as if I’m nothing or dangerous. I’ll explain. My husband and I record a lot of TV shows. For one of the TV shows, we hadn’t yet watched any of the episodes, so some days we watch multiple episodes back to back. It’s this  show that started last year, Secrets and Lies (heads up, spoiler alerts). I was all good with it, until close to the end of the first season. They find psychiatric medications in the woman’s house, Risperdone and Lithium. Then the guy that found the meds looks them up and of course it shows only the negative information about bipolar disorder. It shows information about psychosis and how individuals can go into violent rages when their meds are not level or when they’re off medication.

Maybe there are some people who do go into violent rages when struggling with medication, but that’s not how it goes for everyone. Every person is different and I don’t like it when TV or movies show individuals with bipolar with the most extreme effects. There are probably a lot of people out there that don’t realize that they are only showing the most extreme circumstances. There are people out there that know nothing about bipolar disorder until they see it shown on TV and in movies. It’s stuff like this that gives bipolar disorder and other mental health disorders a bad name.

I looked up the word stigma to see what it says and I found that it says, ‘a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person.’ When bipolar disorder is shown on TV or in movies, it is usually shown in a disgraceful manner. I wonder if this will ever change.

16 thoughts on “I Hate Stigma, It’s Everywhere

  1. my two cents and two sides, (well, maybe three) on stigma

    outward facing side

    stigma is born out of ignorance. people are afraid of what they don’t know. they fall back to how mental disorders are portrayed in the media and in hollywood. We are screwed there. We get stamped by sex & lies and worse yet one who flew over the cuckoos nest. we’re loonies, crazy, nuts, wacko, off our rocker and many other derogatory words. movies like beautiful mind that can cast mental disorders in a neutral if not positive light are almost considered “art” films and don’t have the positive impact we can hope for. many people go to a movies like that and forget about my morning. some help that is.

    inward facing side

    i feel stigma when i feel shame. that shame comes not fitting in, from not measuring up. what do i not measure up to? societal norms and expectation. society have the expectation that i am suppose to handle everything that comes my way. i can’t, especially when facing my mental disorder, so i don’t measure up to societal norms. because of that, i feel shame which them becomes the root of my stigma.

    support side

    what can be done to counter stigma? education. if you believe in strength in numbers, and live in the united states, there is likely a nami (national alliance for mental illness) affiliate near by. give what you can. give your time, give your money or give your rah rah support. sure, no doubt it’s a small dent but any dent helps. every one less person who becomes educated about mental illness is one less person who passes on the stigma.p

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I’m glad you wrote about stigma, I have had many comments from my daughter-in-laws mom in the last few months about bipolar and saying in one instance the person was crazy she was referring to. It has been very hurtful especially since she knows I am bipolar. In this case I feel it is a mean spirit instead of ignorance. Thanks for shinning a light on stigma.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ignorance is often the reason for stigma, but I have come across some people who just don’t care or are mean spirited. I’m sorry you have to deal with the mean spirited kind. Is it possible for you to say something to this person? I don’t know if I could; I’m terrified of confrontation. Best of luck to you

      Liked by 1 person

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