Why Mental Health Needs to Be De-Stigmatized

Mental health is surprisingly something that people still struggle to talk about. But in a day and age where we are more progressive and diverse than ever, it's hard to understand why. Especially in a society where one's image feels so important, it's vital that we begin to assess the ways in which we can normalize the way mental health is viewed.

The mentality in college may be the single most important aspect to keep in mind. Without leaving time to be sure that you are 100% mentally, you will experience the repercussions that come with this. I realized this firsthand as a college student; being on your own all of the sudden really exacerbates any hardship you may go through. But possibly the toughest part of all of this is that not enough people seriously talk about it. There's a reason why there are millions of Reddit threads about feelings of depression, anxiety, and panic. These feelings are so prevalent, yet because of the way our society is fabricated, we chose to ignore these feelings and put on a tough face rather than embracing these issues.

Therefore, it's important that we begin to normalize these types of conversations. If we can fabricate a society that is more open about dealing with uncomfortable emotions, it will benefit everyone in one way or another. Consider how this differs from what we fabricate on social media. Because the sole purpose of social media is to engage with others, we're likely not going to post things that we don't think others would like to see (therefore, we likely post things that shed us in a more positive light). But, that's simply just not the way that real life works. Much to our dismay, not everyone will be eternally happy all of the time. Everyone goes through their fair share of obstacles, no matter how minimal they may be. So, why are we still making it difficult to be accepting of things that can help us get through obstacles (like therapy or mental health services)? If you think of it through this juxtaposition, it doesn't make much sense.

No matter what type of mental block you may be growing through, whether it is feeling the mildest version of alone or feeling yourself slipping into a dark depression, it is SO important to realize that you are not alone. Whenever I have gone through tough times, I automatically compare my struggles to others (particularly over social media). The truth of the matter is that it is called "media" for a reason, and not "real life". Everyone embodies different struggles, whether its minor insecurities or disorders that are treated with medication. Upon talking to people I could rely on, I realized this. It's ok to embody your struggles and embrace what you're going through. In fact, this is what I encourage you to do through your toughest times. And if you are witnessing somebody going through something like this, I urge you to accept them in a way that you would want to be accepted. Because the most important way we can de-stigmatize mental health is by normalizing our feelings. And in the grand scheme of things, it's not that difficult for us to do this.

If we can de-stigmatize mental health, we can help a large chunk of people feel a lot better. And, if one of those people are you or your peers, I'm sure you'll agree that this is absolutely necessary.

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