Discrimination vs. Stigma

sunnyvale gardenDiscrimination means doing something active against a person at work, or denying him access to education of any kind, accommodatiion, entry to particular premises or a membership to a certain club. This is unlawful. Discrimination is the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things especially on the grounds of sex, race or age. Here are some synonyms:-  bias, prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness.

Stigma on the other hand, means having an opinion or judgment held by individuals or society. Stigma is a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance like the stigma of a mental illness.

Most of us think that being disabled means spending a great deal of time in a wheelchair, and that’s it. but, someone who cannot hear, is disabled. A person who is unable to see, is disabled, and of course, there are many hidden disabilities as well. Until I started researching this subject, I was far less aware of the needs of disabled people, particularly those with hidden disabilities or illnesses.

Why do so many people tell me that they hide mental disorders like Major Depression, PTSD – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or social phobias? Because, if they reveal the truth, it can possibly lead to :-

  • Rejection by family and friends
  • Harassment
  • Loss of jobs
  • Failure to be rehired
  • Loss of child custody
  • This kind of discrimination occurs because many of us still hold outdated, negative stereotypes of people who have a mental disorder. So far, attempts to challenge these stereotypes have only been led by a few individuals. every year, approximately 50 million American adults are diagnosed with a mental disorder. if only one of of every 50 are prepared to admit this without shame, others might learn that mental illness does not come from personal weakness nor does it make people behave in a violent or unpredictable way.
  • More people might feel more comfortable seeking treatment. Two thirds of those who need help do not ask for it, sometimes resulting in suicide.
  • Together, we can lessen the blame, shame, stigma and discrimination.


Together, we can lessen the blame, shame, stigma and discimination. Parents CANNOT cause schizophrenia nor any other kind of mental illness.


2 thoughts on “Discrimination vs. Stigma

  1. suzjones

    You know my head tells me that parents don’t cause mental illness but my heart keeps saying “how did you fail”?
    It’s a battle some days Jill. But you know that.

  2. kbailey374

    God bless you – I watched your movie – my heart goes out to you. I have bipolar and there are lots of other mental health issues in my family. I am so so glad you are writing your way to peace about it. Look forward to reading more from you!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s