Let’s say I was roller blading (which anyone my age should NOT do) and I fell. I ran into a trashcan and I flipped and landed on my arm. It snapped, just like a wishbone.
Should this have happened I would go to the hospital and I would get it set and then when the time was right (and possible) I would have a cast put on my arm to help it heal.
So, let us say my brain is like the roller blading incident, I was roller blading, hit the trash can, fell over, flipped, and broke my brain. One would think that I would do the same thing, I would seek immediate attention to my ailment, I would get it set and then a cast for my brain.
There would be no judgement if I had broken my arm. It happens and we fix it.
Why, oh why, is mental illness not viewed the same. When someone has a “condition” there are people that literally take a step back, like they are going to catch it or something. The word “crazy” is thrown around and what does that word actually mean. It is defined in two ways, one way is mentally deranged, especially as manifested in a wild or aggressive way, the second extremely enthusiastic.
I now will speak from my experience. I am not crazy; I have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder amongst other diagnoses that assist my doctors in treating me and the insurance companies getting paid. I am not mentally deranged, but I AM enthusiastic at times, this is probably the thing that makes me fun and likeable.
You cannot catch what I have.
I may cancel plans on you at the last minute. Not answer your phone calls because I am at the brink of tears and do not have it in me to have a conversation. Hell, I may go radio silent because I am hurting so much that it pains me to be around people. The fear that someone may treat me different, in ways of not being included due to the mental illness cuts me to the core.
These are all things that cannot just be “fixed”. You cannot put a cast on my head and make my brain heal (although I wish that you could). I take medication (quite a bit) to help my brain function in a way that is deemed as more manageable and acceptable in society. It allows me to live the life that I need to live in order to maintain the life that I have become accustomed to.
I long for the day when mental illness or mental health is deemed the same as a broken arm. That it is what it is, you see a doctor and you fix it. There is no shame, no guilt, no weird glances, or steps backward. (By the way, all those things are noticed, and they hurt, deep).