Let’s remove stigma of mental illnesses

A few years ago, God flipped a switch in my life. I was flooded with sadness and anxiety about anything and everything that could go wrong in my life and I felt completely alone.

After fully relying on God and finding ultimate hope in him, I was also able to find comfort in others who have experienced feelings of anxiety and I was able to overcome it. However, in speaking to others, I found that many people were afraid to admit such feelings out of how they would be viewed.

Before I developed these feelings of anxiety, I had no clue that so many people in this stage of life suffered from forms of mental illness.

As college students, we are searching for ourselves and are apprehensive of the future; it’s only natural to have fears.

I am a very open person about the emotional trials I have been through in life and I am certainly not ashamed of this reality. However, I have spoken to several friends who are shocked at my openness about my struggles and they are able to open up to me about their own struggles. They admit they have held in their feelings, though, because of the fear of being considered “crazy,” or even worse, being viewed as someone with a mental illness.

The stigma of mental illness is attributed to society’s negative perceptions and assumptions, but we must change these views and start talking about it.

Mental illness is not a weakness or a moral flaw of which to be ashamed. A mental illness is not something a person purposely brings upon himself or herself.

Mental illness should not be a taboo. I believe that lack of communication on the subject makes it worse for those suffering alone.

Through fellowship with others who are suffering through this, I was able to realize I am not alone and I was able to pull myself out of the sadness.

Having gone through this, I am now able to share my story with others. This is a stage in life that we can help one another overcome.

We are meant to encourage and support one another when faced with the difficult stages of life. I propose we start being open about these struggles and understand we are not alone.

Pouring out these feelings to others who understand is incredibly comforting and talking about this openly is the first step in ending this stigma and dealing with mental illness.

About Darlene Mercado

Opinion Editor

Leave a Reply