Some parts of my profession are dead set on convincing the public at large that they should adopt language that always describes emotional problems as a disease. I have written two short posts about the myths of mental illness and I need to add a bit on that subject.
In my first post I linked to a report that revealed that more Americans are fearful of "Mentally Ill" people now than they were a few years ago. These facts led some Mental Health Spokesmen to lament that fact and wonder why since they had been promoting the notion that depressed, anxious and fearful people are diseased and cannot control themselves.
No wonder the public is scared of this group. The marketing of Mental Illness has convinced many Americans that every person who is upset is mentally ill so no wonder they are most suspicious now than before the marketing campaign began.
In my last post I mentioned that the article which reported the study about the growth in Mental Illness also said that the unemployed were more likely to be Mentally Ill than the employed. Say whaaaaaat!? How does being laid off make a person mentally ill? That is ridiculous!
Depressed people can be described very differently than being mentally ill. For example, depression and anxiety can be:
1. A wise response to overwhelming and catastrophic stress.
2. A Fight/Flight response to stress.
3. A physical reaction to a threat.
4. The result of ruminating on past hurts.
5. The result of ruminating on possible future disasters.
None of these is an illness. All can be "healed" by personal changes. Medicine and surgery are not needed. Hope for change is high. Learning to think and act differently is a great cure.