Today is World Mental Health Day!
It is a day to raise awareness on mental health illnesses. For others, it is celebration of triumph over diseases and conditions that strike at the heart of our being.
Many people probably didn’t notice this day or even know much about it. That sounds eerily similar to the indifference observed when it comes to issues of mental health.
But you know what, that’s okay. Sometimes, unless you have been touched by a situation, a person, a condition, or a disease, it is unlikely that you will care a lot (or at all) about a certain issue. That’s why it is important to speak up and let others know what’s going on. Here is where social media comes in.
Key Points from Social Media about Mental Health
The interesting lesson from today is that a lot of people DO CARE about mental health issues. Just browsing around social media, you realize that you are just one voice among many; hoping that other people will awaken to the reality that mental illnesses are among us and there are those struggling everyday with such issues.
Here is a list of some of the key points that people shared:
- Mental Health is just as important as Physical Health
One of the greatest frustrations for those who know about mental health issues is that people don’t think it matters as much as physical health. Check your blood pressure; check your heart beat. But no one is wondering about the mind.
The brain can get sick just like any other part of the body.
Just look around the internet and you will see more “work out your body” pieces and few “mental workout programs”. It’s just not as important.
We are here to say “Mental Health is Very Important”.
- Mental Illness does not discriminate
It does not matter who you are, what you do, where you are from, who you know or how much you workout, mental illness can affect anyone.
Knowing this should make people stop all the name calling, shaming and stigmatizing because mental illness can affect you as well as your friends and loved ones.
- People should stop trivializing Mental Health
Have you ever heard a statement that sounds something like this: “I didn’t have anything to do today; I’m sooo [sic] depressed”? This is just one of the things people do. They don’t understand that there is a world of difference between simply being sad (or bored) and being depressed.
There were other comments on social media such as “Bipolar disorder is not being moody”. These are just a few examples of how people trivialize issues that affect many lives. If people had any idea what others go through – how much pain and sadness others feel as they are struggling with mental illnesses – then they would show more compassion.
- You are NOT Alone
I’ve said it before but when you are going through a mental health issue, it is easy to feel that you are the only one suffering; That life chose to punish you.
The reality is that there are many other people from all over the world going through their own version of pain. Like you, they have had to suffer in silence. When they tried to raise their voices, they were shamed. People just don’t understand until they have walked a mile in your shoes.
But fear not; you are not alone. There are many people who have a sense of what you are going through. There are many organizations and groups geared toward raising awareness and helping to find solutions for mental problems.
- Take care of your health
Another point was that people need to take responsibility for their health. Go for check ups, analyze your family’s mental health history, take the medicine prescribed to you for your mental illness and educate yourself on mental health.
- There is a lot of support out there
Who do you turn to when your life is in turmoil? As I have said before, it is good to have a support system around you.
The beauty of our interconnected world means that you can join support groups online and you can meet people going through similar mental illnesses and exchange ideas.
It was also great to see comments from people who have had mental health problems encouraging others and saying things like “You are not alone” and “Things get better eventually”.
Take heart and believe that you will find a way to manage your condition or cope with a loved one’s struggle with illness. It will not be easy, but you can find a way.
It is great to see a lot of people united in spreading the message of love for those with mental health problems. No matter what problem you have, do not be ashamed; it was not your choice to become mentally ill.
We love you and wish you well.