What is Mental Health and why is there a stigma around it?

Mental Health Is Important!

Mental and Emotional well-being is not just about how your emotions play around with the  basic functionalities of your brain. It is much more than that. An individual’s state of mind, reflects upon how one perceives a situation or a circumstance. Often mental well-being is ignored. Not because one does not want to get treated, but because one fails to understand the symptoms or, the family / friends choose to say “You are not fine! It’s just a phase!”

Mental imbalance does not always mean the individual is psychotic or in a common man’s language a loony! Mental harmony and emotional synchrony depends’ on many factors. A child often bullied in class, might have a simple case of Learning Disorder. This does not mean the child is not mentally strong! However, parents who lack the understanding of associating these symptoms as a regular ailment, tend to push it under the carpet! Why? Because, they do want others in the family to know that their child can not cope up with studies and he / she actually need help to overcome the difficulties! 

Individuals, who have grown up in an environment of being looked down upon, or criticized often tend to carry that baggage way past adolescence and teenage. Even as adults, they tend to visit the dark corners in their memory and relive the episodes. This, tendency, often leads towards an imbalance in mental / emotional well-being.  Few, emerge stronger! They overcome issues by themselves and quickly learn when to say “they have had enough!” 

We have come across people, who tend to live in self-loathing, only because they do not know, how to overcome their fear and often succumb to losing a major chunk of their life. They fail to live and with that, they tend to aggravate the demon within. 

I associate Mental / Emotional imbalance with a stitch that has given way. If it does not get sewed back in time, the stitch tends to rip the fabric from the hem. Few musters the courage to get up and talk about their mental ailment. Very few reach out for help and treatment Why? Because they do not want to be branded as someone who has a psychiatric disorder. A stigma that goes a very long way. 

One must understand, that it is natural for one to have a disorder, a situation in the brain or the inner-self. Individuals effected should learn to accept it. Family and friends should learn not to amplify the situation, but treat it with empathy and care! One must understand, that the effected individual, does not seek sympathy! They only want to be treated fairly and not looked down upon. Mental and emotional health is as important as physical wellness. This awareness and acceptance will go a long way. 

Studies and Research says that the stigma attached to mental health is largely because of the media stereotypes and lack of education. Many tend to attach a negative image to mental health conditions. An autistic adult may portray symptoms that include shyness, difficulty in communicating, obsessive interests, behaviors / mannerisms that tend to repeat in a particular situation or surrounding, difficulty in adapting to social gatherings. Autistic adults, tend to live with their parents. Parents, on the large, fear taking them out or encouraging them to do something that kindles their interests. Why? Because they fear attention and sympathy! It is not the Autistic Adults fault, that they cant maintain eye contact or remain unaware of the others’ emotions! They just don’t have the capacity or the ability to do so. Adults in the autistic spectrum have specific challenges that makes life difficult as it is. Then why create a sense of uneasiness? Why make them or their family feel like they are not worth a life? 

This stigma, becomes the main reason for one not reaching out for help! Its time efface the these. When these stigmas vanish, getting treated would soon become a common factor and way of life.