When on the topic of society, I often speak about how wonderful it is to be in a generation that is so open. And I am so beyond thankful that today, we are able to speak about mental health in a way in which we can help other people.
On the other hand, I cannot stop thinking about how messed up my generation and we as a society are. I have written a blog already on how how social media affects all of us. And I touched on how phrases like, “kms” are affecting people who have mental illnesses. But now growing up and being in what people say is “real life,”. I have realized more and more of mental health taboos being a go-to joke to say and mental health medications being abused in selfish manors.
If you know me, you know that I tend to be a very open-minded person. I am not a very judgmental person and I really am not stuck up in any sense. But if there was one thing I get worked-up about, it would be how mental health is labeled in society.
I have all platforms of social media and one trend that seems to be the most popular at the moment is every person having a mental breakdown. Not only do they say they have one, but they go on saying that they dye their hair, get a tattoo, or get a piercing to cope. The definition of a mental breakdown, “is a mental health crisis rather than a diagnosable condition. This crisis will leave you unable to function normally, to go to work or school, to take care of children, or to do any of your usual activities.” As you can see, if you are having a real mental breakdown there is no way you can dye your hair if you cannot even function. But people, especially teens, are using this phrase in a very loose way making it seem as though having “mental breakdowns” is normal to all people. If one is genuinely having a mental breakdown they need to immediately go to a hospital and be treated. No one who is actually struggling with mental health, would be able to post a video of them having a mental breakdown. It is not trendy, it is a real issue.
Next, mental health medications. Being in college and living on campus, you generally see how 18-22 year olds act on a daily bases. The amount of times that I have seen or heard people talk about using anti-psych, anti-anxiety, or anti-depressant medications for recreational use kills me. This is what I see when I witness this happening; I see the drug-dealer being too careless or selfish to understand that their parents are lucky enough to afford medications, yet they choose to not take them. If you are lucky enough to be able to get help and be put on medication for your diagnoses, do not pass that up. There are so many people in this world struggling to live everyday but do not have the funds to get the medicine they need. Those type of people are the reason that each time I run out of one of my medications, I have to go through a whole process to be able to just simply get out of bed in the mornings.
I know it seems as though none of this is a big deal. That I am just overreacting or fighting a battle that is not mine to fight. But before you say anything, think about if you were a student sitting in class the week after your uncle just committed suicide. The person next to you keeps saying that they are going to kill themselves if they do bad on the test. Or you have been in bed for a week now, not being able to do anything but cry and you see an Instagram post from a classmate who just dyed their hair because of a “mental breakdown.”
Try putting yourself in other people’s shoes before you speak or act, Words hurt. Actions hurt. But they do not always have to. Be yourself, not a trend.
3 thoughts on “Stop Using Our Struggles As A Trend”
Skyla, I have read all of your posts and am constantly impressed by your insights. This post particularly struck me. As someone who suffered from severe panic attacks, requiring both medication and therapy, I truly understand your frustration with people who claim to be “suffering” with mere drama. I don’t joke about anxiety just as I don’t joke about Alzheimer’s, having seen a relative struggle through that horror. Thanks for using your voice to help others become more aware.
Thanks for trying to reach out to educate and demystify mental health. There is a program out there for adolescents called Mental Health First Aid. I think you would be an awesome instructor. If you are interested let me know and I can give you more information. Also, I wanted to share with you as far as terminology goes, we are trying to get away from saying “committed suicide”but saying “died by suicide”. Committed sounds like a crime.. I have been a Mental Health First Aid instructor for almost a year now and have teaching the class for public safety.
Again, you are awesome for what you are trying to do.
Karen Krucek, RN, BS
Regional Nurse Manager
Cell – 630.269.2751
I would love that so much!! Thank you for reaching out! I would absolutely love being an instructor!