YOU DO NOT.....DEFINE WHO I AM! People that live with mental illnesses

Posted by Roxie43 @roxie43, Mar 1, 2012

People that live with mental illnesses are not simply reduced to a diagnostic label found in a text book nor by people who have difficulties looking beyond the surface
Living with a mental illness does not automatically equally incompetence, a low IQ, poor boundaries, laziness, malingering, difficult, dishonest nor unworthy or undeserving of life’s wonderful and fulfilling achievements
It’s important for people living with mental illnesses to realize and be cognizant that the federal government provides funding resources so that states in the U.S. can provide much needed services that will enhance the lives of the people being discused.
Furthermore, if we did not exist, just as if diabetes, the facilities, the funding nor the jobs would exist
For years, I have been exposed to a way of thinking towards those living with mental illness that conflicts with my personal and academically influenced belief system.
For almost 2 decades, I have witnessed how human beings are reduced to pathology instead of individualism.
I am not defined, solely, on genetics nor a label and neither are reader’s.
I am a culmination of: my culture, belief system, experiences, accomplishments and yes some challenges
Interestingly, most of the human population are defined by a host of contributing factors ….not just one!
So, why does it appear that when it comes to mental illnesses some forget, whether intentional or not, that we are somehow incapable of contributing to every aspect of everyday living?
Einstein, former presidents, van gough, super stars and even professionals working in a variety of fields have been known to live with mental illnesses but are they famous for an illness or the contributions they have made to society? Contributions!
Yet, for the common person, it appears that more and more others have been trying to box us into one category and I fully disagree with these impossed categorical limitations = defining who we are!
Please, no matter where you are in life do not allow others to tell you who you are nor what you’re worth.
I, vividly recall when I graduated with an MSW a colleague telling me to my face “you were never meant to be a social worker”. I could not believe what I was hearing let alone feel so demoralized especially since I already had the job title because my colleagues with the same titles only had undergraduate degrees, where doing social work but I, the ill one, with an advanced degree was never meant? ????
I cannot respect people as such. They are a disappointment to human kind.
However, regardless of the sting and the sad reality that employer’s discriminate against us I stand firm!
I am worthy of everything I aspire to do and my illness does not, nor, will it ever define who I am and neither will an insensitive and biased person
We may not always feel great but we have names, careers, goals, relationships, and illnesses but this is representative of the human population.
Let’s not become immune to labels and always remember that no matter what the circumstances if we respect others we should expect the same.
In solidarity against stigma, oppression and discrimination :+)

@roxie43

Amen. Not a lot of people can see how they are being treated differently because they have so much going on with illnesses. It takes guts to write what you wrote. Thank you on behalf of us that can’t.

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Guts it does

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@china

I suffer from depression and it is so intense in winter. Wowy when I read this. This is why my depression is my secret. People can be cruelty without knowing so why give them more?
Wish I could be more confident but trust is hard for me.
Nice job

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Well depending on where you live it has been beautiful and it’s so true I don’t like winters.
I hope this community is helpful in knowing your not alone.
Rox

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Well said Roxie – you are absolutely right. Labels can be useful when trying to apply the best treatments for any particular problem, but these labels never, ever, apply to the person. Unfortunately some health professionals can sometimes forget this – I believe because as a result of thoughtlessness, rather than belief, but it still hurts just the same.

Fortunately medical health professionals usually get this right. My experience tells me that this problem comes usually from non health professionals – friends, family, employers etc

It takes real courage to challenge this cruel assumption or belief, so well done you! Go girl!

Liked by Roxie43, Iraku

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@drcarol

Well said Roxie – you are absolutely right. Labels can be useful when trying to apply the best treatments for any particular problem, but these labels never, ever, apply to the person. Unfortunately some health professionals can sometimes forget this – I believe because as a result of thoughtlessness, rather than belief, but it still hurts just the same.

Fortunately medical health professionals usually get this right. My experience tells me that this problem comes usually from non health professionals – friends, family, employers etc

It takes real courage to challenge this cruel assumption or belief, so well done you! Go girl!

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Thank you I appreciate your feedback

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@china

I suffer from depression and it is so intense in winter. Wowy when I read this. This is why my depression is my secret. People can be cruelty without knowing so why give them more?
Wish I could be more confident but trust is hard for me.
Nice job

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Try to stay positive I find it always helps and remember that you are not alone, many in the community including me to help you if you need us Piglit

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@drcarol

Well said Roxie – you are absolutely right. Labels can be useful when trying to apply the best treatments for any particular problem, but these labels never, ever, apply to the person. Unfortunately some health professionals can sometimes forget this – I believe because as a result of thoughtlessness, rather than belief, but it still hurts just the same.

Fortunately medical health professionals usually get this right. My experience tells me that this problem comes usually from non health professionals – friends, family, employers etc

It takes real courage to challenge this cruel assumption or belief, so well done you! Go girl!

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hi
I was tired when I read your feedback and I just read it again. I smiled because you validated how I think, feel and firmly believe in. Go girl was cute and also empowering.
Appreciated
Rox

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@drcarol

Well said Roxie – you are absolutely right. Labels can be useful when trying to apply the best treatments for any particular problem, but these labels never, ever, apply to the person. Unfortunately some health professionals can sometimes forget this – I believe because as a result of thoughtlessness, rather than belief, but it still hurts just the same.

Fortunately medical health professionals usually get this right. My experience tells me that this problem comes usually from non health professionals – friends, family, employers etc

It takes real courage to challenge this cruel assumption or belief, so well done you! Go girl!

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No worries, Roxie (I’m an Aussie – that’s what we say) it means ‘thanks’, more or less.

I know what you mean – a girlfriend once said that to me and I’ve never forgotten how good it made me feel – pleased and empowered.

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@roxie43

Amen. Not a lot of people can see how they are being treated differently because they have so much going on with illnesses. It takes guts to write what you wrote. Thank you on behalf of us that can’t.

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Unfortunately, some with a little power don’t feel the need to change. Success does not always mean someone is truly happy. Real success is being able to look at yourself and love what you see!

Liked by Roxie43

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Saw doc today and attempted to process how prevalent stigma is but more importantly how demoralizing and hurtful it can truly be.
To shrink someone to a mold that says illness = unreliable, incompetent and unworthy of mutual respect by peers in the workplace is an American tragedy.
It’s a tragedy anywhere…..
How can this be changed? 1in 5 people live with an illness but that twenty percent of the human population needs to speak up because silence simply makes matters worse.
Rox

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@roxie43

Saw doc today and attempted to process how prevalent stigma is but more importantly how demoralizing and hurtful it can truly be.
To shrink someone to a mold that says illness = unreliable, incompetent and unworthy of mutual respect by peers in the workplace is an American tragedy.
It’s a tragedy anywhere…..
How can this be changed? 1in 5 people live with an illness but that twenty percent of the human population needs to speak up because silence simply makes matters worse.
Rox

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This certainly is a tragedy. Unfortunatley until there is acceptance and understanding from people that are totally ignorant. I state this from my own past and present experineces, things will not change. Society needs to step up voice there opinions be outspoken, The time is vast coming that people with such uncaring attitudes need to take a check on the way they are treating people. I hope that i haven’t voiced my opinion too strongly but living my 55yrs with stigma attached at the end of the day it becomes very tiring, almost feels as if you on a downhill battle rather than an uphill. I am very passionate about this and always will be Take care Piglit

Liked by Roxie43

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@roxie43

Saw doc today and attempted to process how prevalent stigma is but more importantly how demoralizing and hurtful it can truly be.
To shrink someone to a mold that says illness = unreliable, incompetent and unworthy of mutual respect by peers in the workplace is an American tragedy.
It’s a tragedy anywhere…..
How can this be changed? 1in 5 people live with an illness but that twenty percent of the human population needs to speak up because silence simply makes matters worse.
Rox

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Amen! Voices in number’s will definitely making a bigger impact but I’m thankful to the ones that have the courage to share how indifference hurts and actually makes me many people who need treatment to shy away.
Rox

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@roxie43

Hello all,
When you have time go to http://www.healthyplace.com The article on stigma is great! My feelings were validated when I read the article and reactions to it.
Let me know your thoughts.
Rox

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There is a section on the site above where you can audio record your story. I did it and once reviewed Healthy Place decides whether to include it in the newsletter..
Rox

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@china

I suffer from depression and it is so intense in winter. Wowy when I read this. This is why my depression is my secret. People can be cruelty without knowing so why give them more?
Wish I could be more confident but trust is hard for me.
Nice job

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Staying positive can be a far stretch but the post on religion confirmed that all is possible. Depression when unmanageable or nothing seems to help robs me of all energy yet my faith never waivers. I should rely on my faith more. Thank you

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@china

I suffer from depression and it is so intense in winter. Wowy when I read this. This is why my depression is my secret. People can be cruelty without knowing so why give them more?
Wish I could be more confident but trust is hard for me.
Nice job

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Hi China. I have always been very positive in my approach to things it has been my survival in many ways. I have had to deal with anxiety from a very young age, depression with me came later in my life. I believe that anyone can have a positive outlook on things, it may seem a far stretch but it’s not really. It is only normal if you are feeling depressed not to feel to great about anything really, but as the saying goes if you don’t suceed try, try again. It to me is trying to work through the feelings of the down and realizing that eventually you will come back up. Rely on your faith, it has never let me down and I’m sure it won’t with you. So nice to talk with you Take care Piglit

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@roxie43

Saw doc today and attempted to process how prevalent stigma is but more importantly how demoralizing and hurtful it can truly be.
To shrink someone to a mold that says illness = unreliable, incompetent and unworthy of mutual respect by peers in the workplace is an American tragedy.
It’s a tragedy anywhere…..
How can this be changed? 1in 5 people live with an illness but that twenty percent of the human population needs to speak up because silence simply makes matters worse.
Rox

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We are going to impact positive change ….all of us one story at a time.
Hugs Rox

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