Currently, I’m raising mental awareness by dispelling common myths is something I started with my posts The Importance of Raising Mental Health Awareness, as well as Mental Illness Myth Number One and Mental Illness Myth Number Two.
When I first started these common mental health misconceptions, I was actually quite furious: it disgusts me that there are people in this world that genuinely believe this bullshit.
But now I feel as though I can turn something extremely negative into something amazingly positive.
Again, I don’t want any of these attacks on the person or persons that constructed the material I’m deconstructing and analysing. I am attacking the material, and the myths, that some people genuinely believe.
This particular piece that I stumbled across was a poem. I’m being deliberately vague as, like I stated, I don’t want anyone starting any attacks on the person(s) responsible. I want to focus on the material solely.
“Entitled little brats, who say they are triggered.”
Firstly, people have the right to tell you if something you’ve said or done is offensive. If they are telling you you’ve offended them, it’s probably because you have said or done something offensive. I know everyone’s currently obsessed with “PC police”, but realistically, the truth is that things aren’t suddenly more offensive, sexist, racist and homophobic … it’s that they always were, and now people are telling you that because they’re in a position where they can be heard.
If that’s the case, it doesn’t make the person/group of people “entitled little brats”.
It actually means you are an entitled little brat because you just dismissed someone for calling you out on your bullshit and you seem to think you’re better than everyone else.
Secondly, like Noelle Martin wrote in her post, we need to stop using the word “triggered” as a joke (if you’re wondering who the insensitive assholes are that think triggering people is a game, look towards the MRAs and MGTOWs).
A lot of people suffer from PTSD, and triggers are real.
You also don’t need to be specifically suffering from PTSD to be triggered by someone or something.
I know that, as a result of a domestic violence relationship, sexual assault and other traumatic events from my past, I am triggered by certain things, and those triggers can cause overwhelming panic attacks.
Whilst no MRA has triggered me, we need to stop being so psychopathic and sadistic that we think it’s fun to try and trigger someone (and no, that’s not hyperbole, unfortunately).
We also need to consider the fact that someone who says that they’ve been triggered may actually be suffering from PTSD and may have actually been fucking triggered.
And if you think that’s okay – and you want to label someone as an “entitled brat” because their past is so traumatic they’ve developed a disorder, then you’re a wanker and I’m seriously disturbed by your lack of empathy for others.
The poem continues with:
“Fuck you, for your attention-seeking pretending to have a mental illness.
“Writing on Tumblr [so] you can get the highest oppression score.
“God forbid that someone on twitter [sic] says something you don’t like, grow up and be an adult, your [sic] in your twenties and should be standing on your own two feet.”
I don’t know how any times it has to be said for it to sink in for some people, or if some people enjoy being deliberately obtuse: raising awareness about mental illness is necessary.
In Australia, almost half the population (45%) will experience some form of mental illness in their lifetime (BeyondBlue, 2016).
One in five women will experience depression (BeyondBlue, 2016).
One in eight men will also suffer from depression – averaging it out to roughly one in six Australians who will suffer from depression at some point (BeyondBlue, 2016).
Those statistics are incredibly high, and that’s just depression.
One in three women and one in five men suffer from anxiety (BeyondBlue, 2016).
On average, eight Australians take their lives each day (BeyondBlue, 2016).
At the moment, one Australian man is taking his life (on average) every four hours.
That’s close to 3,000 Australians who will choose suicide each year.
Now, tell me: did you know the stats? Do you read this and think there’s enough awareness currently being raised?
In your country, without using Google, do you know what percentage of the population suffers from a mental illness?
Without Google, do you know how many men and women suffer from depression?
Without Google, do you know how many people take their lives each year due to a lack of support and help and the idea that most people are just “seeking attention”?
Also, harassment and abuse via the Internet is on the rise.
Online harassment of women, for example, is starting to become normalised (which I can’t express how damaging that is).
According to CNET, harassment and abuse of women online is an ‘epidemic‘.
Male vs female harassment.
Or when Milo Yiannopoulos frequently sends his followers to abuse other people – for example, like in the high-profile case of Leslie Jones.
Or how about when certain ‘trolls’ couldn’t attack an author, so instead they started sending rape threats to his five year old daughter?
So please, don’t say harassment and abuse is ‘normal’, should be accepted as normal, or isn’t a severe problem.
Sure, there’s plenty of low-level bullshit on Twitter, but whatever the reason (even if you don’t think it’s acceptable), someone has the right to block you.
If you’re disappointed that you can’t hurl further insults and abuse at them, that means something is wrong with you, not them.
And lastly, age doesn’t mean shit when you suffer from a mental illness.
Some people can’t stand on their own two feet and actually do need extra help and support.
Growing up and behaving like an adult is about realising that there are plenty of illnesses and disabilities – both mental and physical – are comprehensive and complicated.
Some things will work for some people.
Some things won’t.
Being an adult is about letting go of your judgement, hatred and prejudice you have of people that don’t fit your description of “unwell”, and realising everyone is different.
Originally published on The Melodramatic Confessions of Carla Louise.
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