We Need To Stop Romanticizing Mental Illness
Health and Wellness

We Need To Stop Romanticizing Mental Illness

Living with mental illness is anything but glamorous.

8
We Need To Stop Romanticizing Mental Illness
Fembot

Being diagnosed with a mental illness is something that changes your life forever. When I was diagnosed with a mood disorder in my sophomore year of college, everything in my life shifted. I was so distraught and confused. I couldn't see any possible way that I could live the life I always wanted with this weight inside of my brain.

I started noticing more prominent mood swings. I was too anxious to go to class. My grades, something I had prided myself in my entire life, started to slip right before my eyes. As I sat in the psychiatrist's office, taking in the diagnosis, I knew nothing would ever be the same.

It's been two years, and I now know that I was completely right. Not many parts of my life are the same as they were before the diagnosis. Friends have come and gone. Significant others left, complaining that I was too overwhelming or distant. I changed majors, and eventually, schools altogether.

I've learned a lot in these past few years as I digested how to deal with the situation waging wars in my mind. I've learned that as much as I blamed myself, it would never be my fault. I learned that people are always going to treat me differently once they knew about my illness. And finally, I learned that society plays a huge role in the way we view mental illness.

The stigma associated with mental illness in America is paralyzing for those who suffer from it. People treat you like you either are severely damaged goods or an atomic bomb about to go off. Sometimes they even treat you like there's nothing wrong with you; like you're not actually sick. However, this is only one side of the spectrum.

The other side of the stigma spectrum is just as bad, if not worse. It's the side that romanticizes mental illness.

In the past decade, in an effort to shy away from the negativity of shaming mental illness, the media has started a love affair with its sufferers. Movies, books, and television shows have all painted a beautiful picture concerning mental illness. In most cases, the storylines involve perfect boys falling in love with imperfect girls struggling with depression, anxiety, or an eating disorder. They depict these very real illnesses as lovable quirks used to give characters the right amount of depth. What isn't illustrated is how difficult living with mental illness really is.

It isn't being sad over a boy dumping you. It isn't substituting a protein bar for a meal. It isn't being nervous before a job interview.

What mental illness really is, is a nightmare.

As a society, it is vital that we stop romanticizing mental illness. Preteens and teenagers are growing up thinking that it's romantic and beautiful to struggle with a disorder they know nothing about. They are self-diagnosing, and worse, self-medicating, to prove to the world that they are deep and glamorous.

Mental illness is anything but deep and glamorous. It's time for us to show the world what it truly is, and support those who suffer from it.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

-Having struggled with acne prone skin for years, I was cautious to try a new serum on top of the other products I've come to trust.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Your Social Activism May Actually Benefit From A Cleansing Social Media Detox

In the craziest year of our lives, sometimes there's value in taking a break.

We are living through, unequivocally, one of the most dangerous, unstable, chaotic periods of any of our lives. From COVID-19 to crises of police brutality to the mass exploitation of the poor by mega-corporations, the world outside seems to be looking more dystopic every day. What can be done about it? For many, activism involves heavily posting on social media to keep others aware. However, this comes with a net negative cost — increased levels of anxiety, depression, and hopelessness about the state of the world. Why might this be? After all, in past eras activists have endured comparable and greater levels of abuse and relentless torment from oppressors. Why, now, are people getting so easily burnt out?

Keep Reading... Show less

Reading is a relaxing activity that provides many benefits. Everybody reads books (when they are not watching Netflix, chatting on social media, or making Tik Tok videos) to distract themselves from reality for a while. Many do not realize the positive impact that books have like reducing stress, assisting with sleep, improving cognitively, and strengthening the mind. In honor of National Book Day, there are many great novels that you can read to mark this special holiday. Here are the best ones to check out.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

5 Things You Need To Know Before You Watch 'Arrested Development' On Netflix

"Her?" Yes, she's an amazing show! (You'll get this joke after you watch the show).

Netflix

"Arrested Development" is an award-winning sitcom that aired for three seasons on Fox beginning in 2003, and then was picked up by Netflix for a fourth season in 2013, and then again for a final season in 2018.

However, it seems to remain one of the world's most underrated and under-appreciated shows of all time. Although this article alone won't be enough to skyrocket the show to Netflix's top 10, I hope that it will open people's eyes to the value and quality of the show.

Keep Reading... Show less

I have always felt left out because of how I look and who I am. I have always felt like the elephant in the room, literally. I have always been shamed for my size. For the longest time, I cared so much about what I wear and who I wore certain things in front of. I never wanted to wear shirts that would show a lot of my arm, located above my elbow. I wouldn't wear shorts that didn't go to the tip of my knees, at least. I never wore anything remotely tight, where you could see every curve, roll, or imperfection. I was so insecure about myself, and not many of my friends knew.

Keep Reading... Show less

Being a pharmacy technician never held as many risks as it does now. Exposure too hazardous conditions were little to none, and garbing up was only conducted in IV compounding. But, now, in order to give nurses the medications they need to help their patients, they need us, pharmacy technicians.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

I Asked My Boyfriend His Opinion On Liking Other Girls’ Pictures, And, Spoiler Alert, It's Cheating

"When you get into a relationship and you're in love, you have to realize that liking photos is for the single lifestyle."

Ladies, listen up. If you are in a relationship with a guy and he is liking other girls' pictures on social media, then it's a red flag. A man who can look at someone else and show interest by liking it means he doesn't care about your feelings AT ALL.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

Celebrities Stealing Designs From Small Fashion Labels Is NOT A Good Look, And They Need To Pay Up

When larger, more established figures or brands steal from lesser-known independent creators, they are taking opportunities away from these creators while also profiting from someone else's work and claiming it as their own.

Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B recently collaborated on their new single "WAP," with the music video also being released on Friday. Both Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B posted photos of themselves on Instagram to celebrate the premiere of "WAP." An independent designer quickly noticed that the rappers' matching tops were copies of a top she had designed last year.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

When You Have A Disability, Finding A Job Is Twice As Hard, Believe Me, I Know

We have got to create a safer work environment for people with disabilities.

"My advice to other disabled people would be, concentrate on things your disability doesn't prevent you from doing well, and don't regret the things it interferes with. Don't be disabled in spirit as well as physically." – Stephen Hawking

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

7 Books That Are NOT In The Young Adult Genre That Will Change Your Life

Young Adult isn't the only genre that exists, so here are seven books that any book lover wanting to try something new will love.

One of the most popular genres in literature that everyone has read at least one book from is Young Adult fiction. Now, I personally can say that, in the past, I have been one of those people that only read from the YA section of the bookstore.
While there is absolutely nothing wrong with just reading one genre, it's good sometimes to venture out of your reading comfort zone into the other book genres of the literary world.

In a previous article, I discussed the importance and power of words. The perfect example of this is literature and its impact on the world. Books have always played a crucial part in human lives, from how we are able to expand our knowledge to how we pass our time.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments