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Mental Health and Stigma: Let’s Talk About It More

Mental Wellbeing

Mental Health and Stigma: Let’s Talk About It More


In the estimation of some doctors, there is a mental health crisis in America. There are signs that this is the case. More individuals than ever report feeling anxious, depressed, and fearful.

There are treatment centers for mental health all over the country, but some people don’t want to seek help. Some feel that way because they’re obstinate. Others don’t think they have the money to afford it.

We’ll talk about mental health and the stigma around it some more in the following article. 

Why Does a Mental Health Stigma Still Exist?

For years, many people have felt that if they admit they’re having mental health problems, that’s showing weakness. Think about soldiers coming back from active duty, for instance.

They might have seen carnage and horrific events up close, but because they’re soldiers, they’re supposed to be tough. If they admit they need counseling when they rejoin the civilian population, it’s like admitting weakness to themselves.

What Other Reasons Might There Be for Ignoring Mental Health Struggles?

Other times, mental health is downplayed because of societal expectations concerning gender. This is particularly troublesome with those assigned male at birth.

Some males are brought up to believe that they should downplay or completely ignore any mental or psychological problems they’re experiencing. If it’s not a physical injury, then it’s not important, and they should be able to live with it. This was reinforced for years by characters like John Wayne, the strong, silent type.

Not talking about one’s feelings became the hallmark of entire generations of men. It’s not surprising that these males felt the need to deal with their pain through substance abuse. They also had unhealthy interactions with those around them, sometimes resorting to physical violence or verbal abuse in their relationships.

What’s the Solution?

While there’s still a stigma surrounding mental health, it’s not as bad now as it used to be. Soldiers returning from active duty are encouraged to seek treatment for PTSD and similar conditions. Males are encouraged to seek treatment and to be more open and honest about their feelings with their partners and other family members.

Some employers are better about encouraging their workers to take mental health days when they need them. Celebrities like Pete Davidson have been more open about their struggles with their mental health, which helps others who emulate them to do the same thing.

Some health insurance plans have more options now for those who feel they need help from mental health professionals. Their plans cover therapy sessions, at least in part. However, even though one part of society encourages people to be more open about their struggles, there’s another contingent that would prefer to return to the way things were.

It’s crucial to realize that mental health struggles are every bit as important as physical maladies. If we ignore conditions like depression or anxiety, those who experience them can fall through the cracks. That’s when those who are struggling might resort to self-medicating with drugs and alcohol.

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