My name is NOT Mentally ill. Some people called my son Mentally ill, Crazy or Cuckoo. We always called him by his name, Doron.
Why can’t people call a mental illness by its name? We don’t say; ‘She has a bad case of physical illness,’ now do we? No. we might say; ‘She has a bad case of the flu,’ or, ‘she is ill with diabetes.’ How about calling a spade a spade and using the word schizophrenia, depression or bipolar illness?
STIGMA spreads fear. STIGMA spreads misinformation. STIGMA labels people and perpetuates stereotypes.
We need education instead of discrimination. YES, psychiatric hospitals are still manifestations of discrimination. Should we get rid of them? Should we get rid of some of them – or all of them? No. we need them but they should be hospitals like any other. We need to make STIGMA visible. Due to the digital age we live in, young people can share their personal stories on various social media very easily which can be meaningful. I heard a person with a mental illness once say:
‘Make no decisions about us, without us please.’